Former Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Official, Paul Dignam Sentenced to Over One Year in Prison for Fraud and Embezzlement
PHILADELPHIA (STL.News) Acting United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Paul Dignam, 59, of Philadelphia, PA was sentenced to 13 months in prison, one year of supervised release, and was ordered to pay a $3,500 fine by United States District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno for a scheme to defraud the City of Philadelphia of approximately $119,000 over the course of several years.
In November 2020, Paul Dignam pleaded guilty to mail fraud and embezzlement from a program receiving federal funds. At the time of the charged offenses, the defendant was a long-time employee of the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation (“PPR”) Department, serving most recently as the Regional Manager for the South Region. In this position, Dignam oversaw and managed the PPR programs and operations in this section of the city including activities for members of the community, fund-raising, general maintenance and supervision of personnel.
In 2011, Paul Dignam opened a bank account that purported to be for use by a recreation advisory council, a commonly used governance structure in PPR that exists to support local recreation centers and playgrounds by helping to raise funds, develop programs, and maintain play sites.