Georgetown man will get federal jail time after taking greater than $500,000 from church

Georgetown man will get federal jail time after taking greater than 0,000 from church

Georgetown man will get federal jail time after taking greater than $500,000 from church

A Georgetown man was sentenced Monday in federal court docket for wire fraud after he stole half 1,000,000 {dollars} from a neighborhood church over 4 years whereas serving as its treasurer.

In line with court docket data, 66-year-old Ralph Tackett stole $512,042 from the church and used the cash for his personal private profit. Choose Danny Reeves sentenced him to just about three years in jail and ordered $532,807 in restitution. He should self-report to the Bureau of Prisons in March.

Earlier than Tackett Acceptance of a plea agreement In September 2022.

As church treasurer, Tackett was accountable for church monetary issues together with approving and processing funds, managing mortgage funds, depositing money choices and overseeing church financial institution accounts, in line with court docket data.

The church was not named in court docket paperwork or court docket testimony.

Tackett routinely issued church checks payable to his spouse with out her data and cashed and deposited them into his personal private and enterprise accounts, in line with court docket data. In line with court docket data Tackett transferred a number of the cash to her private American Categorical bank card by way of financial institution switch via the church’s WesBanco checking account.

Tackett took the cash instantly from the providing plate, in line with testimony and court docket paperwork.

As well as, he transferred roughly $187,356 to repay his personal private bank card debt in increments of $1,000 or much less.

“He handled church donations and funds as if he owned them — he managed the church’s working account as if it had been his personal secret checking account,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum. “He hid his threats by producing over-simplified month-to-month stories that omitted quite a few unauthorized transfers of funds to repay his personal private money owed.”

Tackett routinely transferred small quantities of funds totaling $325,000 to an out-of-state particular person “who made monetary calls for on him,” in line with court docket data. The transactions span from December 2015 to July 2019.

Tackett’s protection legal professional, Jarrod Beck, stated Tackett was being blackmailed and cyberstalked. Courtroom paperwork allege that the blackmailer threatened to disclose “sexual exploitation” of Tackett.

“The blackmail affected him, and he feared that the threats in opposition to him would destroy him,” Beck stated. “He did not care about his fame, however the fame of the lives of the folks round him.”

Assistant U.S. Legal professional Tashena Fannin confirmed the blackmail, however reported in court docket that there was no proof that the blackmail was per when the crime first started. He stated the blackmail did not begin till 2017, in line with Tackett.

“The defendant started this felony path earlier than his private intercourse life was threatened, the frequency of his acts and omissions was weekly and sometimes each day, and he continued his scheme for about 43 months,” the prosecutor’s sentencing memorandum stated.

The church group by no means suspected Tackett was taking the cash and believed their monetary issues stemmed from “pure rising pains” after transferring into an up to date and costlier facility, in line with court docket data. His authority as treasurer was not checked.

As soon as the FBI confronted Tackett, he absolutely cooperated with their investigation and was grateful that it was not a burden to hold, in line with court docket testimony Monday.

“He accepts full accountability for his actions,” Fannin informed the court docket.

A plea deal was organized as a result of Tackett’s consent, and prosecutors and the protection crew agreed that he was not a menace to the general public, and certain wouldn’t reoffend as a result of his age and lack of felony historical past.

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