Jul 10, 2014
Jun 26, 2014
Jun 20, 2014
Jun 11, 2014
Public guardian worker charged with embezzling
A woman responsible for managing funds for wards of the state has been indicted for allegedly embezzling $52,000 in public funds, federal prosecutors said.
Heidi Lacerte was indicted on a single count of embezzlement for allegedly taking money from the Office of Public Guardian between February and October 2010, according to prosecutors.
The stolen money was Social Security and Department of Veterans Affairs benefits meant to cover "current medical and fiscal needs" of beneficiaries who were under the public guardian's care, according to the indictment.
The Office of Public Guardian is a nonprofit group established in 1979 to provide advocacy and guardianship for people whose family is unable to serve as a guardian. Part of Lacerte's job as an estate manager required her to manage the finances of individuals who received services from the Office of Public Guardian, prosecutors said. The indictment was filed in U.S. District Court alongside a plea agreement struck with federal prosecutors.
Federal prosecutors said that the funds were kept in an account held by the OPG, so it could be tapped as needed. But around Feb. 23, 2010, Lacerte began pilfering money from the fund by "having checks written to herself drawn against beneficiaries' funds," according to an indictment. Prosecutors say she also purchased gift cards and took cash intended for beneficiary accounts for her own use.
Court documents do not say how Lacerte's alleged theft was discovered. Terms of the plea deal do not reveal what prosecutors may recommend for a sentence, but Lacerte faces up to 10 years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine.
The indictment and plea agreement was made public Nov. 8 in U.S. District Court. Lacerte is expected to enter her guilty plea on Nov. 30 before U.S. Judge Steven McAuliffe in federal court.
- - - - - - - -
James A. Kimble may be reached at JKimble@newstote.com.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Portsmouth teen accused in DWI crash waives hearing - 0
- Derry man faces child sex abuse images possession charges - 0
- Man arrested after two-state pursuit facing more charges - 0
- NH man sought in connection with Maine murder arrested on unrelated charges - 0
- Man accused of burglarizing state police barracks garage claims his rights were violated - 0
- Marriott's parents to face killer at his sentencing next month - 0
- Second arrest made in Portsmouth store robberies - 0
- Probable cause hearings set for pair facing series of drug charges - 0
- Arrested school construction employees back at work in Unity - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Allen Lessels on Motor Sports: Youngsters eye NHMS - 0
- Mark Hayward's City Matters: Manchester's bike culture shifts into high gear - 0
- Ignoring Lyme: What are state, towns doing? - 1
- Dave D'Onofrio's Sox Beat: Red Sox makeover underway - 1
- Tom Herzig's Trackside: MacDonald has NHMS track experience - 0
- Drew Cline: Scott Brown plans to win over NH one handshake at a time - 7
- Anthony M. Kay - 0
- Walsh paces Sweeney Post past Laconia - 0
- Late rally lifts Red Sox past White Sox - 0
132-mph street racers blow by trooper in Nashua, one of two arrested; motorcyclist arrested on I-93 doing 107 mph
Police say Manchester woman arrested for punching ex-boyfriend during custody exchange in Walmart parking lot
Bikers say under-30 generation isn't interested, and can't afford many of the top motorcycles
Mount Washington College to close 2 campuses
Ban fireworks? Get serious
GOP criticizes Shaheen over gas tax
Ignoring Lyme: What are state, towns doing?
Sentence fragment: Coco's cuckoo release
- Mass. Supreme Judicial Court has found upskirt photos taken on a subway aren't illegal. Should such voyeurism be a crime?
- Total Votes: 917