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Former bookkeeper at North Side non-profit indicted

Posted by Admin On December - 5 - 2011

A former bookkeeper at the American Indian Center on Chicago’s North Side has been indicted after an audit uncovered that more than $60,000 from the not-for-profit agency had been misappropriated, according to the Office of Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Cristobal Cotto, 28, of Chicago, was indicted today on numerous counts of Continuing a Financial Crimes Enterprise, Theft, and Forgery. If convicted he faces up to 15 years in prison.

According to prosecutors, Cotto began working as the bookkeeper for the American Indian Center in May of 2007 before he was laid off in 2009 due to a shortage of funds. An audit of the organization’s finances revealed that the defendant had written numerous unauthorized checks to himself and cashed them at nearby currency exchanges.

Authorities recovered surveillance of Cotto during the transactions. His driver’s license information was also recorded by the currency exchanges when he cashed the checks.

In total the defendant is alleged to have written 153 unauthorized checks to himself totaling more than $60,000 in stolen funds from the agency.  

Cotto appeared in court today where he pled not guilty.  His bond was set at $100,000 and the case was continued to Jan. 9, 2011.

The public is reminded that charging documents contain allegations that are not evidence of guilt. The defendant is entitled to a fair trial at which the state has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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