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Waitress sentenced for stealing more than $400,000 from elderly customer

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A Flatlands waitress convicted of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from an elderly regular at her diner has been sentenced to up to nine years in prison, according to the district attorney’s office.

“This defendant preyed on an elderly and lonely widow, gained her trust and then used the victim’s money as her own private bank account to pay for gambling, vacations and other expenses,” said District Attorney Eric Gonzalez. “Her greedy betrayal was egregious and deplorable.”

Alicia Legall of Flatlands pleaded guilty in April to grand larceny and agreed to repay the victim $470,299. She received a three-to-nine-year sentence, meaning she will be eligible for parole after three years, but could serve the full nine, according to the district attorney’s office.

Prosecutors said that Legall, who worked at the Arch Diner in Flatlands, stole around $470,000 from an elderly widow in her eighties from June 2012 to December 2016. Legall befriended the customer, and over the course of several years, gained access to her date of birth, address, social security number, bank information and credit card information.

Legall had permission to use the woman’s credit cards for small purchases at local drug stores and supermarkets, but stole more than $200,000 by cashing 75 checks from her HSBC bank account, forging the woman’s signature. From March 2013 to April 2016, Legall stole $277,789 by making unauthorized charges from the woman’s Mastercard accounts, including cash advances as well as purchases from the Belmont Racetrack, Victoria’s Secret, clubs in Miami, and other businesses. Legall also stole the woman’s identity to open lines of credit and profiles on horse betting websites, according to the district attorney’s office.

The district attorney’s office and the police department’s Financial Crimes Task Force investigated the case.

Reach reporter Adam Lucente at alucente@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow him on Twitter @Adam_Lucente.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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