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Posted by: Maricopa Lawyers on Oct 23, 2013

The arrest of finance director Henry L. Centrella has left the Connecticut town of Winchester in financial peril. Centrella, 59, stands accused of embezzling $2.3 million that was used in part to support his mistress in Florida.

Centrella served as the finance director of Winchester since 1982, giving him unrestricted access to financial assets. Centrella was arrested on five counts of first-degree larceny following months of police work revealing upwards to $2 million of misappropriated funds.

The illegal activity allegedly occurred within a time period from 2008 – 2012. The activity may have gone unnoticed for several more years had a private auditing firm not uncovered an irregularity among town assets. The public is only recently learning how the embezzlement occurred.

Centrella is said to have collected his vast fortune through several tax loopholes and intentionally misappropriating town funds. Staff members issued sworn statements that indicated they were never allowed to assist with town deposits, delicate financial matters were always handled through Centrella exclusively.

Even despite Centrella’s forced exit, Winchester now faces real challenges. In order to work around a stretched budget, Winchester has already laid off police officers and additional government workers. An attorney for the town expressed his opinion that it could take years before the town is likely to recover.

How bad is the situation in Winchester? The town is no longer capable of paying their bills on time. Public projects such as regular road repair are a luxury the town cannot afford. The possibility of schools missing payroll may soon become a reality.

Centrella is currently incarcerated through the New Haven Correctional Facility, held on $100,000 cash bail. According to court documents, all of Centrella’s assets have been frozen.