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Parishioners learn details of possible priest embezzlement

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WAUWATOSA (WITI) -- The Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office is investigating whether a former priest stole money from Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Wauwatosa.

Members of the congregation gathered on Sunday, October 27th to learn more about the alleged activity of their former priest, Father James Dokos. Church attorney Emmanuel Mamalakis presented members with the findings and sequence of events that led them to the District Attorney's Office.

"We were doing some work on accounting. We were cleaning up papers and as we were going through, we noticed some issues," explained Mamalakis.

The issue was first discovered in February when Father Dokos received a reimbursement check for his health insurance premium. It was later discovered that he was allegedly tapping into church funds.

"That was misdirected. There was instructions on how the money was supposed to be directed," said Mamalakis. "It runs somewhere in the $100,000 to $200,000 range."

Court records show donors left the church more than $1 million in a trust fund overseen by Father Dokos. The money was intended for the mortgage and maintenance of the cultural center.

Recent subpoenas suggest Dokos may have paid himself more than $60,000 from the fund. Checks show Dokos spent more than $1,000 at a florist, $700 at a racquet club, paid numerous medical bills and wrote his bank a check for $57,000.

Father Dokos has since been transferred to a church in Glenview, Illinois.

Mamalakis says parishioners are ready to resolve the issue and move forward.

"We really want to move on because we are more interested in what happens to our souls and from a spiritual place where we want to go," said Mamalakis.

No charges have been filed, but the DA is reviewing the case. If Father Dokos is charged and convicted, he could face jail time.

1 Comment

  • Margaret Roldan

    Stop…. stop… stop agree with the others he is a kind giving innocent Father and all has been proven false! He has given more of himself to God and the church and much more than the small amount this is based on. Why not report on someone or something with proof? Bless Father Dokos as he has done for so many of us for so many years.

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