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Friday 16 April |

Priest Accused of Gambling Away $380,000 Meant for Refugees

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 03/30/16

Details:

According to reports in the Canadian media, an Ontario-based Catholic priest is under investigation on suspicion of gambling away funds that had been set aside to provide for refugees newly settled in Canada. Father Amer Saka, a priest at the St. Joseph Chaldean Catholic Church in London, Ontario, is suspected to have lost roughly half a million Canadian dollars (equivalent to $380,000 U.S.) that had been entrusted to him by local families keen on sponsoring new arrivals from the Middle East. Saka phoned the church’s bishop, Emanuel Shaleta, last month to confess that the funds were lost. “He called me on the phone and . . . said he lost all the money. I said, ‘How?’ He said, ‘Gambling,’” Shaleta told the Toronto Star this weekend. He has since checked the priest into an addiction center. Investigators are examining the situation, though no formal charges have been filed. “We believe that Father Saka has a serious gambling problem and that these funds may have been used for that purpose. Since there is an investigation going on, we cannot confirm what he’s saying,” Shaleta added.

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