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  1. ITV Report

'Sister Act' nuns admit embezzling cash to fund gambling spree in Vegas

Two nuns took the money from tuition, fees and donations at St. James Catholic School in Torrance, south of Los Angeles. Photo: AP

Two nuns who worked in a Catholic school in California have admitted to embezzling around $500,000 (£396,000) to fund a gambling spree in Las Vegas.

Sisters Mary Margaret Kreuper and Lana Chang stole money given towards tuition costs, fees and donations at the St. James School in Los Angeles.

The missing money was discovered as part of a routine audit, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles told AFP.

Ms Kreuper had been a principle at the school for 29 years while Ms Chang had also taught there for 20 years.

They retired this year but are understood to have been stealing money over a decade.

"Our community is concerned and saddened by this situation and regret any injury to our long relationship with the families of the school," the sisters' order said in a statement on the Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet website.

Parents were informed of the nuns' actions in a letter from the school's pastor.

He said both sisters had shown "deep remorse."

Monsignor Michael Meyers wrote: "Sister Mary Margaret and Sister Lana have expressed to me and asked that I convey to you, the deep remorse they each feel for their actions and ask for your forgiveness and prayers.

"They and their order pray that you have not lost trust or faith in the educators and administrators of the school."

Their story has been widely shared online, with social media users comparing it to Hollywood movies such as 'Sister Act' and 'Nuns on the Run.'

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