From the Associated Press:
NORRISTOWN, Pa. - A prosecutor said he will seek jail time for a former wedding caterer accused of bilking more than $40,000 in deposits and fees from at least four couples.
Matthew Belford, 36, who operated two area catering services, Ambrosia Catering Inc. and Fete Events, is charged with 20 felony counts of theft and a charge of deceptive business practices. He waived a formal arraignment Wednesday.
Prosecutors said one couple who contracted with Belford, John and Christy Gill, of Dresher, had paid him $7,046, but received only an e-mail on the morning of their May 21, 2005, wedding. "As of 12:01 a.m. today, Ambrosia Catering Inc. has officially closed their doors for business ... unfortunately we will not be catering your wedding today," the e-mail said.
Craig and Colleen Thompson, of Souderton, signed a contract with Belford to cater their May 20, 2005 wedding and had paid him $24,424. When a tent did not arrive by May 17 they became concerned, but Belford never returned their calls, according to the criminal complaint.
"Certainly a caterer who leaves a group of brides and grooms high and dry on their wedding day deserves to go to jail," Assistant District Attorney Steven J. Latzer said.
Belford was held in the Montgomery County prison in lieu of $500,000 cash bail.