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Press Release

Former Paralegal for Chicago Law Firm Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for Embezzlement

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Illinois

CHICAGO — A former paralegal for a Chicago law firm has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for embezzling more than $600,000 from bankruptcy estate accounts.

BECKY LOUISE SUTTON fraudulently embezzled the funds from 2009 to 2018 while working on bankruptcy matters for the law firm.  Sutton embezzled money from more than 40 bankruptcy estate accounts and several liquidating trust accounts in Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 matters on which she worked.  Sutton orchestrated fraudulent transfers of bankruptcy funds from fiduciary bank accounts intended for creditors to accounts she controlled, including her personal bank account, credit card account, student loan account, and mortgage account.  In one instance, Sutton listed a company with a name similar to a true creditor to disguise her fraudulent diversion of the funds.  Sutton’s conduct victimized not only the creditors, but also her law firm, a partner at the firm for whom she worked, and the U.S. Trustee Program, among others.

Sutton, 68, of Manteno, Ill., pleaded guilty last year to a wire fraud charge.  In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Mary M. Rowland on Tuesday ordered Sutton to pay $611,263 in restitution.

The sentence was announced by Morris Pasqual, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and Robert W. “Wes” Wheeler, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI.  Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Trustee Program.  The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kartik K. Raman.

Updated April 3, 2024

Financial Fraud