The Revs. John Skehan, 81, and Francis “Frank” Guinan, 66, are scheduled for trial, each charged with one count of grand theft over $100,000 – a felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison.
Each is accused of pilfering hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Roman Catholic parish they were tapped to grow and inspire, St. Vincent Ferrer in Delray Beach.
Instead, they left the faithful reeling after their arrests by Delray Beach police in 2006. While accused of misappropriating more than $8 million, they are charged with outright stealing far less. Detective Thomas Whatley referred to them at the time as “professional money launderers.”
Assistant State Attorney Preston Mighdoll is expected to present evidence of gambling trips that Guinan made with women to the Bahamas and Las Vegas…
A former female employee of the church, Colleen Head, given immunity by prosecutors, recounted for police the skimming of offertory plates and her wondering how Guinan could afford to live a lavish lifestyle on a priest’s salary, according to the court record. She told them of envelopes stripped of cash in an Easter Sunday collection bag that he handed her.
The current pastor, the Rev. Thomas Skindeleski, said he will reserve any comment on the case until after a court decision. “I will say I have asked people to pray more deeply, to consider more strongly the Lord,” he said
Skehan looks to me like he had more fun with the money than Guinan.