SANFORD — A former executive director of York County Community Action Corporation has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $1 million from the agency from 2005-2009. Thomas Nelson, 56, waved indictment and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to embezzle, embezzlement from an agency that receives federal funds, six counts of tax evasion and two counts of filing false tax returns, Tuesday at U.S. District Court in Portland.

Nelson was executive director of YCCAC from 1988-2010. His attorney, Jeff Silverstein of Bangor, confirmed that Nelson was director of a similar program in Rockingham County, N.H. until last week, when he voluntarily left that agency.

Nelson is free on a number of conditions of release, pending sentencing.

YCCAC Director Barbara Crider said the board is troubled and saddened by what has transpired. She stressed no federal funds were taken and no programs were affected by Nelson’s actions. She said the agency will pursue restitution through the courts and that the agency is insured. The YCCAC is based in Sanford.

Read the full story in Wednesday’s Journal Tribune.

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