Over the course four years, a waitress at a Brooklyn diner used information from one of her regular patrons to write checks, open lines of credit and otherwise spend nearly half a million dollars on shopping, gambling trips and vacations. Now, she’s looking at a few years in jail—and paying back the money.
District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced that 46-year old Alicia P. Legall of Flatlands had been sentenced by a Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice to an indeterminate term of three to nine years in jail.
From 2012 to 2016, Legall stole about $470,000 from an elderly widow in her 80s, who was a regular customer at the diner where Legall worked. Befriending the woman as far back as 2002, Legall managed to gain access to all the victim’s pertinent personal information—which allowed her to run wild with the widow’s finances.
Legall forged the woman’s signature to write herself 75 checks, totaling more than $200,000.
She also ran up more than $275,000 in unauthorized credit card charges, using the woman’s account. Legall had gained the woman’s credit card information to assist her with small purchases at local drugs stores, the statement says, but she abused that trust to an astounding degree.
Legall spent more than $200,000 on retail, restaurants, hotels and clubs from New York to Atlantic City and as far away as Miami. Additionally, she pulled nearly $75,000 in cash advances using the widow’s credit cards.
Finally, stealing the unknowing elderly woman’s identity, Legall opened profiles linked to her own phone and email with online gambling sites to bet on horse racing.
“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 Attorney General Gonzalez. “Her greedy betrayal was egregious and deplorable. My Office will remain vigilant in protecting our seniors and other vulnerable residents from abuse and exploitation.”
Along with being sentenced to three to nine years in prison, Legall has also been ordered to make restitution to the widow—to the tune of $470,299.