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Monroeville man Pavinich charged with stealing $425,000 from widowed mother

| Monday, Aug. 19, 2013, 10:43 p.m.

A Monroeville man is free on a recognizance bond to await a hearing on charges of misappropriating more than $425,000 from his widowed mother for his benefit.

Mark D. Pavinich, 52, has an Aug. 27 hearing on charges of theft, access device fraud and related crimes. He's accused of taking $425,249 from his 77-year-old mother, Virginia Pavinich.

He could not be reached for comment.

The woman told investigators with the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office that she gave her son power of attorney in February 2007, designating him to act as her agent in case she became incompetent. She said she and her husband of almost 50 years, Anthony Pavinich, jointly owned several pieces of property until his death in September 2008.

Anthony Pavinich was experiencing dementia and in declining health when he and Virginia Pavinich went with their son to set up an irrevocable trust for their money and property in June 2008, a criminal complaint states.

Virginia Pavinich believed the trust designated her the beneficiary and told investigators she was stunned to learn that all her properties no longer were in her name but belonged to the trust.

The attorney who set up the trust told investigators he repeatedly warned Mark Pavinich that he was a fiduciary with the responsibility of managing the money and that the cash was not his to spend.

Virginia Pavinich told investigators her son has been liquidating her assets and isolating her from her finances. She accused him of threatening to institutionalize her if she did not go along with his plans.

Michael Hasch is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7820 or at mhasch@tribweb.com.

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