An office manager is accused of using company credit cards to systematically rip off a Bethpage charity of more than $130,000, Nassau Police said.
Merline Campbell, 45, of 2500 Parkview Place, Baldwin, faces grand larceny charges in the scam dating back to August, 2010, involving the well-known community organization Sustainable Long Island.
Nassau detectives said Campbell was employed as an office manager for Sustainable Long Island, a non-profit think-tank involved with community development and revitalization programs around the region. It has an office on Seaman Avenue in Bethpage.
Campbell used company credit cards to make personal purchases and then used company funds to pay those bills, detectives said.
The civic organization issued a statement Wednesday, saying it had fired Campbell and was cooperating with police:
"Through the course of Sustainable Long Island’s regular audit preparations, the organization came across unauthorized expenditures by a staff member," the written statement said. "Upon discovering these expenses, Sustainable Long Island immediately informed local authorities and terminated the employee. We are working cooperatively with the authorities and counsel to investigate and recover funds."
Sustainable Long Island, said Executive Director Sarah Lansdale stated she has been advised to limit comments on the incident to the statement.
Sustainable Long Island promotes economic development, environmental and social equity causes around the community. It's focus on so-called "smart growth" initiatives. It is involved in a wide variety of brownfield and community redevelopment projects in Nassau and Suffolk counties.
Campbell was arrested Tuesday at her Baldwin home. Police have charged her with grand larceny, identity theft and other related counts. She was scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday in First District Court, Hempstead.