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The Journal Gazette

Friday, October 12, 2018 1:00 am

15 officials charged with corruption

Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS – Treasurers for several school districts and fire departments are among 15 public employees around Indiana charged with public corruption for allegedly stealing more than $1 million in government funds, authorities said Thursday.

Five of the defendants were charged in federal court, and the 10 others face state charges filed by local prosecutors. U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler said all 15 suspects were arrested in the unrelated corruption cases.

The arrests followed investigations conducted by Minkler's office, the FBI, Indiana State Police, local law enforcement and the State Board of Accounts, which performed audits that gave prosecutors evidence.

Minkler said the sums involved in the five new cases his office is handling represent big financial blows to local government entities.

The cases include $58,000 allegedly stolen from Greenwood Middle School, just south of Indianapolis, by a woman who served as a school treasurer, and thefts by the treasurers of three central Indiana fire departments.

Kellie Cline, 35, is accused of stealing from programs receiving federal funds while serving as Greenwood Middle School's extra-curricular activity treasurer. She was fired in April after being placed on leave following an internal audit that found the discrepancies.

The biggest losses among the 15 cases involve the Indianapolis Local Public Bond Bank. Two employees are charged in Marion County with allegedly stealing about $400,000.

“These won't be the last cases, and we continue watching,” said Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry.