Man pleads guilty to stealing over $700K from Butler Co. animal shelter

WAYNE TOWNSHIP, Ohio — A Wayne Township male admitted to thieving more than $700,000 from the Animal Buddies Humane Society around quite a few a long time when serving as a volunteer treasurer, in accordance to prosecutors.

Jeremy Bruce Taylor, 48, pleaded responsible in Butler County Common Pleas Court to aggravated theft, a third-degree felony. Taylor, a CPA, diverted hard cash from the nonprofit agency that cares for homeless animals to pay off his possess credit rating cards and make private purchases from June 4, 2014 to March 26, 2021, according to Assistant Butler County Prosecutor Garrett Baker.

The volume stolen totaled $730,984.19, according to the assistant prosecutor.

“He was volunteering as the treasurer in the course of that time,” Baker said. “(Taylor) utilized cash from Animal Friends’ lender account to pay back off his own individual credit history card. That on your own was roughly $677,000.”

Taylor used the own card for vacations and likely to live shows and “was paying out rather a good deal for every month,” he mentioned.

In addition, Taylor also employed the organization’s credit playing cards to make buys for his possess reward, including spending his mobile telephone bill and building buys at Kings Island.

“I think it just becomes a source of money for him,” Baker said, including there ended up also a range of purchases to Rural King and other corporations for Taylor’s farm.

Taylor also wrote checks to a fictitious seller and when the animal mates board asked for some lender financials, he supplied with them with falsified statements, Baker stated.

There was a change to board management in 2020 and board associates questioned Taylor for monetary files, but he was reluctant. He eventually turned over bogus paperwork, Baker stated.

The board employed a forensic accountant and Taylor employed an attorney who then contacted law enforcement and the prosecutor’s place of work, in accordance to Baker.

“He (Taylor) was cooperative and presented all the files, which include the altered types,” the assistant prosecutor stated.

Taylor is cost-free on his possess recognizance right until sentencing. Choose Greg Stephens established sentencing for July 18. He faces up to 36 months in jail.

“It was very clear he was seeking to address this up and maintain it from them, it is very clear the financial institution statements had been photoshopped,” Baker said. “It was a terrible final decision for him to enrich himself at the humane society’s expenditure. I just cannot assume of a worse entity to steal from.”

The Animal Friends Humane Modern society Board unveiled a assertion about Taylor that said in portion, “A former member of our board exploited the trust we placed in him and employed his schooling as a CPA and information of our money procedures to steal from this firm. The AFHS Board and Executive Director uncovered the embezzlement on its own and hired authorized representation, such as a forensic accountant, to perform a entire review of our documents.”

A professional bookkeeper and an outdoors CPA has been employed as portion of a variety of variations to make certain some thing like this by no means occurs once more, according to the statement from board attorney George Jonson.

“Our bylaws are staying current by an attorney specializing in nonprofits to make sure total transparency and adherence to specifications for best tactics for nonprofits. Notable alterations include things like limiting board member phrases and instituting an once-a-year auditing process,” the assertion reads.

“AFHS is Butler County’s only open up admission shelter and maintains a results rate rivaling that of advertised “no-kill” shelters. AFHS has achieved and/or surpassed that level considering that 2019. Our higher reside release fee is because of in component to our govt director’s creation of numerous new positions … She and her personnel ensure every single single animal has a good chance for adoption into a loving, lasting home. And in 2020, an further 214 canines and 103 cats ended up pulled from overcrowded (battling) shelters, saving them from euthanasia and featuring them an more possibility at adoption,” in accordance to the statement.

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