Foley Baptist Church secretary sentenced for embezzling funds
Sharon Collins, a former financial secretary of the First Baptist Church of Foley, was sentenced to 60 months in prison for wire fraud in connection with her embezzlement of more than $200,000 from the church where she worked on Feb. 21.
According to court documents, Sharon Collins, 53, was employed by the First Baptist Church in Foley between May 2007 and July 2019, during which time she served as the church’s financial secretary. In that role, Collins was responsible for, among other things, managing the church’s accounting system, preparing financial reports, creating and providing financial statements to the church’s leadership, and managing church-issued credit cards meant to be used solely for the church’s benefit. Collins embezzled $209,744.61 of church funds through unauthorized use of church-issued credit cards. In connection with her guilty plea, Collins admitted she fraudulently used church-issued credit cards to pay for personal expenses, to purchase trips to New Orleans and Las Vegas, to book a cruise, to buy jewelry, and to fund a bachelor’s degree. Collins’s fraudulent credit card transactions transmitted interstate wire signals in furtherance of her fraud scheme, in violation of federal law.