A Ballet School Rehired an Embezzler. Then $1.5 Million Vanished.

The ex-employee is now charged with taking the money from the Kirov Academy, which was created by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, founder of the Unification Church.

Comments: 33

  1. Perhaps the corona virus will bring to light the seriousness of the disease of gambling. I was thrilled to hear that the Casinos had closed and hope that this period will offer a time of reflection about our values.

  2. @Jennifer I know. I worked with a guy who was betting online, all day, in his office. The point being, addicted gamblers can always find a "fix".

  3. @Jennifer : I hope you're not implying, with "reflection about our values," that people with addictions have no values or poor values. Addiction is an attempt to cope with overwhelming anxiety, and while you might dislike most of the ways in which people cope, there is no good reason to harshly judge those who struggle. In addition, people can gamble online, so it's hard to know how the closing of casinos will affect compulsive gamblers.

  4. @DW99 , I'm sorry, repeatedly stealing from organizations does reflect poor values, anxiety or not. I suffer from overwhelming anxiety myself on a daily basis and know for a fact, if my actions were leading towards crime I would have the moral strength to admit my problems and seek help. Hello, Gamblers Anonymous, its free! Ms Kim has obviously not had the moral strength to do the same, even after serving prison(!) time. C'mon!

  5. Any organization that hires a known embezzler and hands over their finances to that person doesn't deserve to exist. The fact that the school is still run by the same people who made the decision to hand over their finances to a known embezzler should be sufficient justification to result in the immediate demise of the school. But alas, there will always be deluded parents who desperately see their child as one day becoming a renowned dancer, and they're willing to pay tuition and risk everything to pursue their dream. As P.T. Barnum supposedly said, "There's a fool born every minute." At some point, the government should step in and force the closure of this obviously corrupt organization.

  6. @Bill I'm always surprised with how lackadaisical organizations are about money management. Lack of audits, a single person in charge of bank accounts and check signing, and yet embezzlement keeps happening with the repetition of similar bad practices. And, yes, hiring someone with a previous record of embezzlement as a money manager is incomprehensible.

  7. When people have already demonstrated that they lack character, ethics and trustworthiness - and they have a proven history of gambling addiction and criminal embezzlement - it's best to believe they are exactly who they've shown themselves to be.

  8. @curiousme ... Stop talking about Trump.

  9. Does the ballet school not bond its employees, especially its treasurer? That would either have protected against the loss, or have brought to light that Ms Kim was not bondable, hence should not have been considered for that position.

  10. I am sorry, but I am suspicious that some of those in charge of hiring and supervising her may well have 'profited' in some way from her fraud.

  11. I understand why you would want to give someone a second chance, but there should have been overwhelming supervision on this employee.

  12. Dear readers, I'd wager (pun intended) that a large part of that $1.5 million that she has embezzled has gone to support her lifestyle vs her actual casino losses. She probably doesn't drive a 10-year old Honda and dress in rags... and where does she live, is she renting? Let's have pity on her for being an out of control gambler until we have "the rest of the story."

  13. @Southern Ed : Unsure what you're saying. "Let's have pity on her for being an out of control gambler...."???? Gambling like alcoholism and drug addiction is a choice, a very bad choice. NOT sure why "we" should have any pity for a person who twice stole from her employers and left her children to serve time in prison....

  14. If they wanted to give her a second chance, it should have been with strict internal controls and secondary review of every single one of her transactions. A second employee or a board member could have reviewed the checks and debit card transactions online and nipped this in the bud, before she got away with $1.5 million. It never ceases to amaze me that the organizations that can afford it the least are the ones with no one minding the store.

  15. Couldn’t happen to a nicer organization.

  16. All the usual right wing suspects. The only thing missing is performing at Mar a Lago

  17. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. (how many times has Trump "embezzled" in one way or another?)

  18. OK, this was just plain stupidity. If they wanted to give her a second chance, it should have been with strict internal controls and secondary review of every single one of her transactions. A second employee or a board member could have reviewed the checks and debit card transactions online and nipped this in the bud, before she got away with $1.5 million. It never ceases to amaze me that the organizations that can afford it the least are the ones with no one minding the store.

  19. I listened to a talk once by a psychiatrist; and he kept coming back to a theme ...... "the past predicts the future ..." ..... "the past predicts the future ..."

  20. Just revoke any and all non-profit tax benefits they get...They sound like either a bunch of crooks and/or dups...and probably getting kick backs too...while the tax payers subsidize their crooked behavior. If we want "Gambling for Profit" we can all go to the Casino of Wall Street...and actually we do and we give them bailouts too when those "geniuses" squander our money with all their "brilliance!"

  21. The Johnny Rivers lyrics include the line "you knew I was a snake before you let me in".

  22. Now we know the answer to the question...”what could possibly go wrong?”

  23. “There is a lot more to it that is not out there,” she said, “but this is not the right time, unfortunately.” Good try lol.

  24. Well, the "third time's the charm". They can rehire her again. Seems like that's what they want.

  25. How can you say: “I have resurrected this school from close to bankruptcy to winning 15 awards,” Ms. de Cordova said. “I hate to use this phrase, but I want to make the Kirov great again.” when you bring shame on the organisation that hired you not once, but twice? Perhaps, they may have felt the need to give redemption but when you can only cheat to bring them to financial solvency shows that there isn't a lot of conscience cognitive brain power going on. Paraphrasing the election meme of a man who doesn't know how his divisive governance has brought this country/ nay the world on the brink of financial disaster shows that you need to spend a long time studying business and ethics.

  26. I am shocked, shocked I tell you, that gambling and embezzlement went on here. On second thought, never mind. No I'm not. I'm just amazed they rehired this person. To coin a phrase, "what *were* they thinking?"

  27. You can't fix stupid. Forrest Gump.

  28. karma twice

  29. People think of the 'Moonies' as just a looney religious cult. They were a right-wing anti-communist outfit used by the Korean military dictatorship to attack dissenters, as well as by Washington. Moonies collaborated with the CIA around the world and were supported by Georgetown society and right-wing 'think tanks.' Moonies promoted crazy right-wing anti-communist propaganda, and sought to insinuate themselves into broader society. It is akin to the racist Falun Gong cult today, which rabidly supports Trump's war on China, and has the Shen Yun "dance troupe," schools and "newspapers" as fronts for its cult and right-wing politics.

  30. Come again? HM

  31. No lucky lucky......saying Tm pending

  32. Once a thief.....

  33. Stupid is as stupid does. Compulsive thieves have sticky fingers. Given her history, why on earth would the Kirov Academy even consider letting her in the front door?