Secretary who posed as attorney, stole fees from law firm gets 5 years: prosecutors

Aracelia Dominguez Photo credit DuPage County

(WBBM NEWSRADIO) —A former legal secretary who pretended to be lawyer and stole nearly $100,000 from a law firm when she pocketed fees has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Aracelia Dominguez of Chicago, 42, pleaded guilty almost two years ago to theft by deception. She was accused of meeting with prospective clients of a DuPage County law firm, posing as a lawyer to take care of immigration matters.

But prosecutors say Dominguez was a legal secretary and that her employers at the law firm had no knowledge of the scheme. Dominguez allegedly took cash fees and routed the proceeds of checks from the duped clients into her own bank accounts.

She stole nearly $100,000 over several years, authorities said.

“Ms. Dominguez was trusted by her employer,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said in a news release. “She repaid that trust, however, by stealing nearly $100,000 from the very people who put food on her table and clothes on her back.”

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