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Former E.C. library director pleads guilty to fraud

Manny Montalvo 2008. | File Photo~Sun-Times Media

Manny Montalvo in 2008. | File Photo~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: September 24, 2013 6:28AM



Former East Chicago Public Library Director Manny Montalvo pleaded guilty Thursday in court to claiming more than $30,000 of fraudulent exemptions to his 2009 federal income tax return.

Montalvo, 38, said little during the hearing, other than to answer questions from his attorney, Ray Szarmach, and U.S. District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen.

He did admit, however, that he had not incurred more than $23,000 in unreimbursed business expenses and $17,000 in medical expenses.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Gary Bell said that evidence would show that Montalvo had submitted fake business expenses he had never incurred and that the library district had paid him back for all his actual business expenses, along with giving him a monthly car allowance.

“(The medical) figure was almost entirely false or materially inflated,” Bell said.

Szarmach stressed, though, that none of the claims Montalvo, who was fired from the district in 2011, submitted to the library system were made up, meaning that the library district was not defrauded out of money.

The exemptions he submitted to the government were for separate, false claims, Szarmach said.

Montalvo’s plea agreement includes a promise that his wife will not be prosecuted. It does not cover restitution as the IRS handles its own debt collections.

He is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 5.



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