Cemetery Administrator Pleads Guilty in Scheme to Sell Burial Plots

For Immediate Release April 20, 2017
Contact: Press Office
781-897-8325

WOBURN – Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan has announced that John Hughes, 71, of Revere, pled guilty today in Middlesex Superior Court to five counts of larceny over $250 and receiving outside compensation by a municipal employee in connection with a scheme to sell unused cemetery burial plots, owned by the City of Melrose, to unsuspecting buyers.

Judge Peter Krupp sentenced the defendant to two years probation and ordered the defendant to spend the first 90 days of his probation in home detention. Judge Krupp also ordered the defendant to pay $74,900 in restitution to the City of Melrose during the two year probation period.

The defendant was appointed Cemetery Administrator of the Wyoming Cemetery in Melrose in 2007. Beginning in 2011 the defendant began telling individuals looking to buy burial plots for later use, that they could purchase previously sold burial plots within the cemetery at discounted rates. The defendant sold 13 burial plots, thereby diverting funds from the City of Melrose, and netting approximately $75,000.

This case was investigated by the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office and the Melrose Police Department with the cooperation of the City of Melrose.

The prosecutors assigned to this case were Assistant District Attorney Doug Cannon and Assistant District Attorney Cyrus Chung.

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