Former FJD procurement technician charged by feds with near half-million dollar theft from Phila. court system

By Jon Campisi | Jul 25, 2012

A former procurement technician for the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania has been charged by federal authorities with defrauding Philadelphia’s court system.

William Rullo, 47, who resides in Lower Bucks County, was charged via criminal information issued by the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on July 23.

According to the charging papers, Rullo, who was responsible for purchasing supplies, equipment and services for various FJD departments, devised a scheme between December 1999 and March 2010 by which he would obtain money, property and services from the court system by means of “false and fraudulent pretenses, representations, and promises.”

Rullo stands accused of stealing from the FJD by forging the signatures of judges and administrators on invoices to vendors, causing the Accounts Payable Department to pay for various items, such as electronics, that would ultimately benefit Rullo.

The defendant is charged with using FJD funds to illegally purchase 36 plasma and LCD televisions for himself, spending court money on cell phones for family members and friends, spending FJD funds on about $35,000 worth of monthly parking permits for a privately-owned downtown Philadelphia parking lot, and using his work-provided credit card to make purchases totaling about $321,000 for his own benefit.

The entire 11-year scheme is said to have netted Rullo about $433,000 in stolen money, property and services from the First Judicial District.

“Defendant William Rullo obtained money, property, and services from the District for his personal benefit through false and fraudulent representations, deception and forgery,” the criminal information states.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that if convicted, Rullo faces a maximum of 20 years imprisonment, up to $250,000 in fines and possible restitution.

Rullo no longer works for the First Judicial District of Philadelphia. The Inquirer reported that he had earlier been terminated.

A First Judicial District spokesman, when contacted by the Pennsylvania Record, declined to offer specifics surrounding Rullo’s apparent firing, saying the courts were not offering any comment on the matter.

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