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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Texas

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Two Former Community Council of South Central Texas Officials Admit to Stealing Over $188,000 in Government Funds

In San Antonio this morning, 65-year-old former Executive Director Robert James Lucio and 55–year-old former Chief Financial Officer Monica Lynn Russ (aka “Monica Lynn Gourley”) admitted to stealing over $188,000 from the Community Council of South Central Texas (CCSCT) announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs, San Antonio Division. 

Appearing before United States District Judge Fred Biery, Lucio and Russ pleaded guilty to one count of theft from a program receiving federal funds.  As a result, Lucio and Russ face up to ten years in federal prison.

According to court records, in 2012, CCSCT received over $4 Million in federal funding administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program and the Community Services Block Grant program.  In 2012, Lucio and Russ schemed to provide themselves with unauthorized salary increases, bonuses and incentive payments despite policies and procedures put in place by CCSCT Board of Directors to prevent such actions.  An internal audit completed in 2013 revealed that the total amount of unauthorized overpayments to Lucio totaled $92,881; Russ, $95,590.

Lucio and Russ remain on bond pending sentencing scheduled for January 6, 2017. 

This investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Greg Surovic is prosecuting this case on behalf of the Government. 

Financial Fraud
Updated August 18, 2016