Trial begins for woman accused of stealing charity funds

Maureen Myles, 62, is convicted of stealing more than $30,000 from a fundraiser set up to help a teen who has cerebral palsy and is wheelchair bound.

Maureen Myles, 62, is convicted of stealing more than $30,000 from a fundraiser set up to help a teen who has cerebral palsy and is wheelchair bound. (7/22/15)

CENTRAL ISLIP - The bench trial for an East Northport woman accused of stealing thousands of dollars from a disabled teen began Wednesday in Central Islip.

Prosecutors say Maureen Myles, 62, helped Pamela Capotosto set up a fundraiser for her son, who has cerebral palsy and is wheelchair-bound. Capotosto says she allowed Myles to set up the fundraiser with the understanding that the money would go toward a wheelchair-accessible van.  

According to Newsday, Myles was at that time an organizer for a group called the Trinity Program, a Huntington social services agency that was planning its annual Drive for Love fundraiser.

Prosecutors say approximately 100 people donated more than $35,000. Capotosto told the court Wednesday that Myles kept putting her off and became a different person once the money came in.

"After the fundraiser, at some point she started to change. She was not the same, friendly person that she was," says Capotosto.   

Myles' attorney denied the charges.

In 2004, Myles was convicted of grand larceny and scheme to defraud after she bought cruise tickets using credit card numbers she took from her job.

Her trial resumes Thursday.

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