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The former PTA treasurer who looted $82,000 from a Cobble Hill elementary school was jailed Wednesday for failing to make scheduled court-orderd restitution payments.
Providence Hogan was arrested in 2011 and charged for embezzling funds from PS 29’s PTA treasury, which she spent on fertility treatments and the rent on both her home and Providence Day Spa, her Atlantic Avenue business that is now located on Nelson Street.
As part of a sweetheart deal to keep the 45-year-old mom out of jail if she paid back everything she stole, Hogan handed over $50,000 of the pilfered lump sum in 2011 and was required to make scheduled payments until the stolen funds were paid off.
But Hogan, who showed up in Brooklyn Supreme Court empty-handed on Wednesday, is short $17,700, according to the District Attorney’s office.
Hogan, who’s behind bars in Rikers’ female-only jail, will be released next week. But she could face up to a six-year sentence if she doesn’t pony up the full reimbursement by Jan. 2014, the District Attorney’s office said.
Hogan’s lawyer, Stephen Flamhalft, did not return calls for comment by press time.
As treasurer of the Henry Street school, Hogan had unrestricted access to the PTA’s checkbook, and after the PTA discovered a gap in its tax returns, she admitted to cutting several big checks to herself ranging from $6,000 to $52,000 between 2008 and 2010.
Supreme Court Judge Suzanne Mondo warned the former PTA mom back in 2011 that those restitution payments had better come in on time.
“If you fail to make one payment, I will order a warrant for your arrest, and when you are brought in, you will be incarcerated,” said Mondo in 2011. “I am not going to accept any excuses for your failure to make a future payment.”
Mondo stuck to her guns when she ordered Hogan back into custody on Wednesday.
This isn’t the first time Hogan has missed a payment.
Hogan failed to make her first court-ordered restitution payment of $40,000. Flamhaft tried to work out a deal for Hogan to pay $30,000 up front and the rest over four years, but District Attorney Charles Hynes threatened to take Hogan to trial if she didn’t return the money.
Hogan claimed she was destitute and that “this ordeal has been jail” — and that she would rather go to Rikers than return money she no longer had.
Weeks later, Flamhaft met with Mondo and asked for leniency.
Hogan was able to make the $50,000 payment after an acquaintance of Hogan’s bought a sizable portion of her spa business, according to her lawyer. She also received donations from neighbors after the New York Times wrote a sympathetic portrait of the embezzling mom. Calls to PS 29’s PTA were not returned by press time.Reach reporter Natalie Musumeci at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (718) 260-4505. Follow her at twitter.com/souleddout.
©2013 Community Newspaper Group
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