L. Mark Hurley had racked up serious gambling losses. Unfortunately, he used his union’s coffers to cover them. On Wednesday, September 24, Hurley, a Connecticut state prosecutor and treasurer of his union, was sentenced in State Superior Court to 22 months in prison plus five years of probation and 400 hours of community service for embezzlement. He illegally had diverted to his own use well over $80,000 from a combination of union and union-sponsored charity funds, the latter earmarked for crime victims. Hurley, 48, in August had pleaded no contest to larceny and forgery charges, and was disbarred immediately after sentencing.
A resident of Trumbull, Hurley had been a prosecutor for the State of Connecticut since 1986 and a supervisory assistant state’s attorney (Milford) since 1995. In addition, for 16 years he was treasurer of the Connecticut Association of Prosecutors. It was in the latter capacity in which he succumbed to temptation. This past April, following a two-month investigation, Hurley was arrested for keeping $1,325 in nonprofit funds intended for forwarding as restitution for crime victims. It turned out that he’d diverted another $55,367 to his own use. Additionally, he had taken $28,900 from the prosecutors’ union. Hurley resigned in March once the ongoing probe became common knowledge.
Hurley’s defense attorney, Edward Gavin, described his client as exhibiting long-term obsessive-compulsive behavior that had been manifest, among other things, in a “horrible, horrible gambling problem.” Hurley himself admitted before Judge Patrick J. Clifford that he stole money to disguise gambling losses. “It’s clear we’re all here today because of my own actions and I take full responsibility for them,” he said. According to his attorney, he had made full restitution. As for Hurley, he just wants to get back to his wife and two daughters and put his life back together. (New Haven Register, 9/18/08).