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Sentencing adjourned for priest who admitted stealing from parish

By JOLEEN FERRIS

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - The sentencing date for a well-known local priest who admitted stealing more than $87,000 from his parish was adjourned for a second time on Friday in Oneida County Court in Utica.

Father Valentine Krul admitted back in January to stealing the money from St. Mary's in New York Mills, where he'd been the parish priest for 17 years. Part of the money went to purchase a condominium in Florida. The money was left to the church in members' wills and from church fundraisers.

Krul pleaded guilty to second-degree grand larceny and faces a sentence of five years probation with the first six months to be spent in the Oneida County Jail.

His sentencing on Friday was adjourned until June 20.

Ironically, Krul will be done serving his sentence at that time, as he chose to begin serving it at the time of his plea in January. The six-month sentence becomes a four-month sentence due to good behavior. On Friday, the judge set Krul's release date for May 27. However, he will still show up for his June 20 sentencing in Oneida County Court.

"Then he'll come back for the sentencing and the reason he'll come back for the sentencing at that point is, so that we're able to pay a more greater share of the restitution," says Krul's attorney, William Borrill.

Borrill pointed out that the reason for Friday's adjournment is so that the sale on Krul's condo in Florida can go through and he can pay more restitution to the church.

Krul is still a priest. Officials with the Syracuse Diocese say Bishop Cunningham is reviewing the entire case: the crime, the sin, its progression through the criminal justice system and Krul's response to it.

When that process is complete, Cunningham will make a determination as to whether or not Krul is fit to continue serving in the ministry. There is no time frame for the bishop's decision.

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