SVU’s Tamara Tunie Victim of $1M Theft Via Accountant

On Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, actress Tamara Tunie plays the straight-talking medical examiner to which Elliott and Liv turn to to determine what befell their vics just prior to death.

In real life, the SVU star herself is a victim of a relatively large crime, albeit not one salacious enough to be featured on the show in anything but a short sub-plot. Tunie’s former accountant and business manager of ten years Joseph Cilibrasi admitted in court Thursday that he bilked the actress and other clients in the arts and entertainment industries, to the tune of $1M in Tunie’s case alone.

Cilibrasi, who pled guilty to grand larceny and other charges, conceded that he’d siphoned the cash to fund several personal projects, mostly entertainment related. The accountant says he invested in Broadway shows and films with the pilfered cash as well as commissioning a screenwriter to create “a script about a historic building,” according to prosecutors.

The Washington Post elaborates on some of Cilibrasi’s investments:

Cilibrasi used some of the proceeds of his thefts to back such shows as “Legally Blonde: The Musical” and the Tony Award-winning “Spring Awakening,” and films including the Tunie-directed “See You In September,” the Manhattan District Attorney’s office said when the case was unveiled last December… The accountant also used some of the ill-gotten cash to vacation in Italy, Puerto Rico and Los Angeles, and to hire a writer for a script about Bannerman Castle, an elaborate building on an island in the Hudson River, prosecutors said.

Reps for Tamara Tunie didn’t comment on the developments. Cilibrasi is currently free on bail, and faces two and a half to seven and a half years in prison at his January sentencing.