Illinois Office Manager Sentenced To 15 Months For Embezzling $250k

CHICAGO — The former manager of a Mundelein dental office was sentenced Wednesday to 15 months in prison for bilking insurers out of about $250,000 over 14 years by billing mostly for work never performed on patients.

“I’ve never even had a parking ticket,” Denise L. Sullivan, 43, of Wadsworth told U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber before he imposed the sentence. “This is a crisis beyond all my wildest imagination.”

To buttress the phony claims, Sullivan mailed insurers copies of X-rays of patients who had previously undergone legitimate work, according to prosecutors Scott Levine and Jacqueline Stern.

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Illinois Bookkeeper Gets 5 Years For Embezzling $127,000

ELMHURST — An Elmhurst bookkeeper was sentenced Wednesday to 5 years in prison for embezzling about $127,000 from a dental office in 2004 and 2005.

Patricia Gaffney, 54, who was convicted by a jury in April of theft of more than $10,000, continued Wednesday to maintain her innocence, blaming her attorneys, the judge’s evidential rulings, the company’s dentists and their office staff. But she admitted having financialproblems.

“You treated the doctors’ accounts as your own piggy banks,” said DuPage County Judge Mark Dwyer.

Assistant State’s Atty. Ken Tatarelis said Gaffney had confessed to Elmhurst police in a 22-page statement but later recanted about depositing checks from Advanced Oral & Maxillofacial.

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Illinois Dental Office Employee Arraigned For Stealing From Co-workers’ Purses

DECATUR – A 34-year-old woman who is on probation for a 2012 conviction for stealing purses from cars was arraigned Tuesday on a felony charge of theft after she allegedly stole from fellow employees at a dental office.

Kelly Lee Distasio was arrested April 2, after a manager at Familia Dental, 141 E. Pershing Road, told the police that she was suspected of taking cash from a purse, coat pocket and cash drawer.

The manager said thefts began occurring at the workplace during the prior two weeks, about two weeks after the woman they knew as Kelly Martin was hired as a receptionist.

According to a police statement, when two other receptionists left their work area, Kelly walked over to the filing cabinet in that area, which contained a cash box.

Video surveillance footage clearly showed “Kelly opening this drawer and reached in to the rear of this drawer,” said the statement, by Decatur patrol officer Joseph M. Sawyer. “Kelly retrieved something and placed them in her coat pocket … Kelly hurried while doing this while looking for the receptionists to return.”

The cash box was later found to be “missing $269.”

Other missing money included $130 from an employee’s purse, $10 from an employee’s coat pocket and $20 from a petty cash fund.

When Distasio was questioned, she initially said she was not near the filing cabinet. When told about the video that placed her there, she “recalled getting in the drawer to get a patient’s file.”

The manager told the police Kelly was hired after she showed a North Carolina ID with “Kelly Martin” on it. A background check turned up no prior criminal record. According to police, Martin is an alias for Distasio.

In her prior case, Distasio was convicted of stealing purses from two women, 78 and 66 years old, as the victims were loading groceries in their vehicles in the Walmart parking lot on the city’s north side. The incidents occurred in late March 2012. Distasio was apprehended after surveillance video identified the vehicle she had been using. One of the purses contained $700 in cash.

Distasio was sentenced to two years’ probation after pleading guilty to two felony counts of burglary May 15, 2012.

Distasio is being held in the Macon County Jail, pending her preliminary hearing in her most recent case April 24.

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Woman Charged With Stealing From Illinois Dentist Pleads Not Guilty – Also Had Cocaine In Her Possession

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A Lombard woman charged with ripping off thousands of dollars from a Frankfort dentist while working as his receptionist pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of theft and possession of a controlled substance.

Dorothy Lynn Guerrero, 28, was ordered to take a drug test prior to her Wednesday morning arraignment. She apparently passed and was allowed to leave after pleading not guilty.

 Guerrero is free on $50,000 bond following her Dec. 11 arrest. Frankfort officers had taken her into custody on a warrant.

Content retrieved from ID: 64722683
Height: 5′ 5″ (1.65 m)
Weight: 185 lb (84 kg)
Global Subject Number: 139328
Booking Date: 12/11/2012 at 16:04
Release Date: 12/12/2012 at 23:57
Prisoner Type: NEW ADF
Housing Facility: N/A
Total Bond Amount: $0.00
Total Bail Amount: $0.00
Bond Information:
Bond Number Bond Type Bond Amount
2012-00003849 10% $50,000.00
Charge Description Offense Date Docket Number Sentence Date Crime Class Court Date Arresting Agency
POSS AMT CON SUB EXCEPT(A)/(D) 12/11/2012 5:18 PM 12CF2890 FELONY 12/12/2012 1:30 PM
THEFT/CONTROL <$500/PRIOR 12/11/2012 5:18 PM 12CF2890 FELONY 12/12/2012 1:30 PM

Illinois CPA Sentenced For Taking Almost $200,000 From Aurora Office

A 50-year-old Sandwich woman created bogus checks in order to take nearly $198,000 from an Aurora dental office, according to Kane County prosecutors.

Gayla S. Cook appeared in court Thursday a month after an arrest warrant was issued for her on felony charges of theft and theft by deception.

She is being held in Kane County Jail on $150,000 bail with a Feb. 25 hearing scheduled. Cook is seeking a bond reduction, court records show.

Cook “created 88 checks” and deleted them without the knowledge of the owners of Grand Dental & Associates to take $197,765 as part of the thefts which date back to June 2010, court records state.

Cook’s certified public accountant license, which she obtained in 2012, is set to expire in September, according to the Illinois Department of Financial Professional Regulation. The state agency does not show any current or previous disciplinary action against Cook.

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Gayla Cook, a former accountant who stole thousands of dollars from an Aurora dental office, appeared in court recently to make the first restitution payment following her recent sentencing.Cook, 52, who appears in state records as being from Sandwich, pleaded guilty in April to a charge involving 88 checks she created and deleted without her employers’ knowledge, in order to steal nearly $200,000 from Grand Dental between May 2010 and May 2013.During a June 24 hearing, Kane County Judge D.J. Tegeler sentenced Cook to four years of probation, 30 days in Kane County Jail spread across 10 weekends and to repay $197,765.93 to the business, according to court records. Cook was back in court recently to present a $20,000 check to begin her restitution payments.Documents show Cook is ordered to pay a minimum of $2,000 per month toward the amount she owes.

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Indictment Charges Illinois Woman With Embezzling $190,000 From Dental Practice

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Peoria, Ill. – A federal grand jury today charged a Tazewell county woman with embezzling approximately $190,000 from a dental practice where she had worked for nearly 16 years. Constance (“Connie”) Gustafson, 53, of Hopedale, Ill., was charged with seven counts of mail fraud and four counts each of misapplication of funds relating to health care and theft relating to health care, as announced by U.S. Attorney Jim Lewis, Central District of Illinois.

According to the indictment, starting at least as early as 2006 and continuing to February 2014, Gustafson stole cash payments made by patients.  To encourage patients to pay cash, Gustafson allegedly offered discounts, sometimes as much as 40 and 50 percent.  The indictment alleges that on some occasions, she provided patients with receipts, but did not record the payments in the practice’s computer system or on the patients’ ledgers.  On other occasions, she provided receipts and documented the payment in the computer system but then deleted the entries.  It is also alleged that she concealed her theft of cash by applying insurance payments received for patients with insurance coverage to patients’ accounts which she had used to take cash.  On some occasions Gustafson deleted dental procedures from patient records.  As alleged, the defendant deposited the cash into her credit union account and used it for her personal benefit.

If convicted, the maximum statutory penalty for each count of mail fraud is up to 20 years in prison and up to 10 years in prison for each count of embezzlement or theft in connection with health care.

The case is being prosecuted by Supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorney Darilynn J. Knauss of the Peoria office.  The charges are the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The defendant will be given a notice to appear in federal court on a date to be determined by the U.S. Clerk of the Court.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Content retrieved from Indictment Charges Hopedale Woman with Embezzling $190,000 from Dental Practice | USAO-CDIL | Department of Justice