ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Former United Way chief William Aramony drew seven years in prison Thursday for embezzling at least $600,000 to pay for illicit romantic getaways with women less than half his age.
An ashen, grim-faced Aramony made no statement before U.S. District Judge Claude M. Hilton imposed the sentence and three years' probation. The defendant was also ordered to repay the nation's largest charity $552,000.
Aramony, 68, must report to a minimum-security federal prison as soon as space is available, probably in four to six weeks. He could be out in about six years.
Aramony was convicted in April of fraud, tax and conspiracy charges. Two top associates, Thomas J. Merlo, 64, and Stephen J. Paulachak, 49, were found guilty of helping him loot the charity and conceal his romances.
Merlo, former chief financial officer, was sentenced to four years and seven months in prison and ordered to repay $552,000. Paulachak, who headed a United Way spinoff company, got 2 1/2 years in prison. All three plan to appeal.