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Local attorney pleads guilty to federal fraud charges

March 21, 2012

St. Louis, MO - The United States Attorney’s Office announced today that Jonathan D. McKee pled guilty to embezzling over $400,000 from approximately ten clients.

According to court documents, between 2007 and 2011, Mr. McKee was a local attorney with a general practice, including the representation of people who were injured or had claims based on contract or negligence where he would enter into a contingent fee arrangement. Mr. McKee would receive a certain percentage of any successful settlement. When he prevailed on behalf of his clients the insurance company would mail a check to McKee in St. Louis County, payable to him and his client, which was deposited into a McKee bank account. McKee distributed appropriately to the client, paid medical and other expenses and kept the remainder as his contingent fee. However, on many occasions, McKee would keep the entire check upon receipt rather than pay his client and expenses.

JONATHAN D. McKEE, St. Louis County, pled guilty to one felony count of mail fraud before United States District Judge Carol E. Jackson, who set sentencing for June 25, 2012.

Mail fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentences, a Judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.

The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service. First Assistant United States Attorney Mike Reap is handling the case for the U.S. Attorney's Office.

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