Chesco bigwig nabbed in $1.5 million swindle

Guido LaVella allegedly lived a lavish lifestyle, buying luxury cars, season tickets to the Eagles, Tiffany's jewelry and even a $48,000 charity "donation" that got him concert tickets and a meet-and-greet with the Dave Matthews Band.

Problem is, it wasn't his money. LaVella, 28, of Gilbertsville, worked as chief financial officer for a Tredyffrin Township business called Taylor Gifts and embezzled nearly $1.5 million to fund personal purchases and pay off credit card and casino debts between October 2009 and May 2013, when he resigned, according to Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan. He now is charged with theft, forgery and related offenses.

The alleged theft came to light after a bank alerted the company to an unusual transfer from one of its accounts, Hogan said. "This  case is another example of the necessity for all businesses to create tight accounting controls over expenses," Hogan added.