A former paralegal who worked in bankruptcy at a Chicago law firm is accused of embezzling more than $600,000 from accounts, officials said Thursday.

Becky Louise Sutton, 66, formerly of Park Forest, is charged with three counts of wire fraud and three counts of embezzlement from the estate of a debtor, according to a statement from the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago.

An indictment was returned Wednesday for Sutton, of Austin, Texas, who embezzled the money from 2009 to 2018 while she worked at the law firm, according to the statement.

Sutton placed “fraudulent transfers” of bankruptcy funds from fiduciary bank accounts intended for creditors to accounts she handled — including her own personal bank account, credit card account, student loan account and mortgage, the statement said.

In one instance, Sutton used a company with a name similar to a creditor to disguise her transfer of the money, according to the statement, which said the indictment seeks forfeiture from Sutton of $611,263 in alleged criminally derived proceeds.

Reached by phone Thursday evening, a lawyer representing Sutton, Gal Pissetzsky, said Sutton plans on pleading not guilty and declined to immediately elaborate.

“She was just indicted today…we’re going to wait until we get the discovery,” Pissetzsky said.

Sutton’s arraignment in federal court in Chicago has not yet been scheduled.


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