A former Highland Park accountant was sentenced to probation and periodic imprisonment for stealing over $300,000 from a developmentally disabled client.
Thomas Errico, 81, of Deerfield, was a partner at Anspach, Errico & Co. in Highland Park when he allegedly stole from clients who hired him to prepare and file their tax returns, according to the Illinois Attorney General’s office.
Errico pleaded guilty in August 2021 to one count of theft between $100,000 and $500,000, a Class 1 felony.
Last Wednesday, Lake County Judge Mark Levitt sentenced Errico to 36 months of probation and periodic imprisonment, meaning he may leave the Lake County Jail for employment and medical reasons.
Errico was also ordered to pay $330,000 in restitution.
The Illinois Attorney General’s office charged Errico, a former certified public accountant, with theft in 2018 after he stole approximately $330,000 from an 86-year-old man.
Errico was the man’s accountant for several years and had been hired to prepare and file annual tax returns.
Errico either failed to file or filed incorrect tax returns for the man for tax years 2013, 2014 and 2015, according to the attorney general’s office.
The matter came to light when the victim’s nephew noticed a discrepancy while reviewing bank records and found that the victim, who is developmentally disabled, issued more than 30 checks totaling approximately $343,000 to Errico’s accounting firm between 2012 and 2016.
Errico remitted only around $9,700 to the government and stole the rest, the attorney general’s office said.
“When people hire an accountant to prepare their annual tax returns, they are trusting that individual to ensure that filings are accurate and meet state and federal government requirements,” Attorney General Kwame Raoul said.
“I will continue to ensure that accountants and tax preparers who lie to or steal from clients are held accountable for their actions,” Raoul said.