Judge delays sentencing of funeral home director in attempt to return money to victims

David Faust scammed clients out of $300,000 — even forged death certificate for living woman

Jim Melwert
August 23, 2018 - 4:36 pm
David Faust

Bucks County District Attorney's Office

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BUCKS COUNTY, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — Thursday was supposed to be sentencing day for a Bucks County funeral director who scammed people out of more than $300,000 — even forging a doctor’s signature on a death certificate for a woman who is still alive. 

But the judge delayed David Faust's sentencing to try one last time to get some of the money back to his victims. 

Bucks County Judge Diane Gibbons told the victims and their families she realizes how hard this is: Losing a loved one is bad enough, but then add in the trauma of learning that money for services had been stolen.

After a long recess, Gibbons said she looked up the Faust Funeral Home and the adjoining property in Hulmeville. Faust was to be sentenced on nine charges, including theft by deception and forgery. But meeting with attorneys, Gibbons delayed his sentencing to try one final time to get some or all of the money back to the more than 50 victims who thought they were paying for funeral costs — about $300,000 to the victims, and another $130,000 to the Social Security administration, as he lied to get disability payments.

RELATED: Funeral home director pleads guilty to stealing $300,000 from clients

Prosecutor Marc Furber said in addition to a tax lien on the funeral home, there’s also a mortgage and bankruptcy.

"[But] if there’s any hope, if there’s any prospect, this is it. And we should know in the coming weeks what that prospect is," he said.

Faust forged doctors' signatures on death certificates — even for one woman who was still alive — and lied to collect more than $100,000 in Social Security disability.

This woman said her mother, one of Faust's victims, will turn 103 in October.

"He has $13,000 of her money. It was supposed to cover the reception after and flowers and everything, and she doesn't have that much money left, so it’s tough," she said. "I really don’t expect to get it all, but it would be nice to get some of it."

Her mother is unaware of the stolen funds, however.

"She doesn't know anything about this. I’m not telling her," said the daughter.

The sentencing is now scheduled for Sept. 27. Faust faces a maximum of more than 70 years in prison.

Gibbons made it clear if he doesn't make efforts to pay back a significant portion of the money, it will count against him at sentencing.