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Borough manager mounts criminal defense against theft charges

The 44-year-old former manager of a Pittsburgh borough has been released from custody after waiving a preliminary hearing in his criminal case. The defendant, who had served as borough manager for Munhall, is mounting a criminal defense against allegations that he pilfered more than $230,000 from municipal accounts. The man has been released on a $20,000 unsecured bond; he was not required to put down a deposit on that amount. Authorities say that the defendant, who has been in custody since the beginning of April, is accused of overpaying himself by more than $230,000 between the years of 2010 and 2013. He had been working in Munhall since 2009, beginning as a part-time clerk before eventually rising to the borough manager position. Audits from the Internal Revenue Service, along with other financial documents, indicate that the man took the money from taxpayer coffers. He is officially charged with four counts of theft by deception in connection with the case. Council representatives say the defendant vacated his post in June 2013, around the time they discovered that certain types of audits had not been completed during the man’s tenure. The implications were devastating; council members say they lost a significant amount of regional sales tax capital, pension contributions were not paid, and the municipality was even considering layoffs because of the financial loss. The man has issued his own scathing remarks against the council, alleging that their financial records were illegitimate. He has also claimed that he simply followed the council’s directions in transferring certain funds. Criminal defendants facing theft charges and similar allegations may benefit from the assistance of a Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney. These professionals may help protect the rights of criminal defendants during criminal trials and other legal proceedings. An attorney is a valuable ally from arraignment through sentencing, and sometimes beyond. Source:  Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Munhall borough manager released on bond” Robert Zullo, Apr. 09, 2014

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