Springfield, IL-(ENEWSPF)- Linda Heyde, 59, of Marion, Illinois, was indicted by a grand jury and charged with three counts of embezzlement and theft, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. The offenses each carry a statutory maximum sentence of up to 10 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and mandatory restitution. The indictment also seeks forfeiture of $524,100 in criminal proceeds.
The indictment alleges that Linda Heyde, from 1996 through May 2012, engaged in a scheme to defraud the city of Marion, Illinois Water Department while she was the water department’s manager who had primary control over the billing accounts. The indictment alleges that the City of Marion Police Department was advised that Heyde was handling the water department’s deposit funds in a suspicious manner and that daily bank deposits did not contain cash. The City of Marion Police Department installed covert cameras in the water department to monitor suspicious activities of Heyde. Heyde was observed on camera placing money in her purse. An audit was performed and showed that falsified adjustments had been made to customer accounts resulting in approximately $500,000 in missing funds.
An indictment is a formal charge against a defendant. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The indictment is the result of an investigation conducted by the City of Marion Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Norman R. Smith.
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