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An ex-accounts manager for a University of South Florida medical school-affiliated non-profit has issued a guilty plea to an embezzling scheme that involved nearly $13 million. Most of that money was pushed through an adult website, with some of it eventually being funneled back to him.
According to a report from the Tampa Bay Times, 59-year-old Ralph Puglisi could get up to 20 years in prison as a result of that plea deal, which he made back in June.
Puglisi was an employee for the University Medical Service Association, a Tampa-based company that provides staffing and support for local medical providers.
Court documents say that he spent about $11.5 million at an OnlyFans-esque adult site called MyGirlFund (not trying to treat you like an idiot or anything, but the site’s NSFW). That web page lets users pick the channels of specific women they want to subscribe/pay money to before those women do *blank* on live video.
An investigation revealed Puglisi had been subscribing to a channel that belonged to a woman believed to be the fiancee of his stepson. The pair split nearly $750,000 in profits, with Puglisi taking a 60 percent cut.
It was reported that the investigation found Puglisi had around 22,000 recorded interactions on the site, with about 2,800 of those being visits to the profile of the aforementioned alleged fiancee.
“The investigative team developed a working theory that Puglisi worked either with the principals of the adult content provider, or with the female profiles of the adult content provider in order to financially benefit from funds charged,” say prosecutors.
Other allegations against Puglisi include a claim that he spent $647,000 on a limited liability company he owns along with his wife. He’s also accused of spending nearly $375,000 on personal travel, nearly $200,000 on rent for a member of his family, and well over $100,000 on household improvements.
In November the transactions were discovered. He was fired, along with his boss and the internal auditor of the University Medical Service Association.
The university released a statement saying that association had “implemented enhanced control structures, including upgrading financial reporting systems, to better protect against criminal acts.” It was said that the stolen money came from funds from patient care, and that it didn’t come from state, research, or grant money, nor from philanthropic donations.
The school is also suing Puglisi.
Puglisi’s attorney says his client is cooperating and intends to make restitution.
You can read the Tampa Bay Times’ report here.