U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Rhode Island
(401) 709-5000
October 3, 2014

Former Sears Dealer Sentenced in Federal Court for Fraud

PROVIDENCE, RI—Joseph F. Kilty, 53, of Wakefield, R.I., a former authorized dealer of a Sears Hometown and Outlet, Inc. store in Middletown, R.I., was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Providence to three years of probation, the first six months to be served in home confinement, for defrauding Sears of more than $154,000, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha; Shelly A. Binkowski, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Boston Division; and Vincent B. Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the Boston Field Office of the FBI.

At sentencing, U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith also ordered Kilty to perform 300 hours of community service and to pay restitution to Sears in the amount of $139,989. Sears previously withheld a commission check due to Kilty in the amount of $14,131. Kilty pleaded guilty on June 5, 2014, to one count of mail fraud.

At the time of his guilty plea, Kilty admitted to the court that between January 2012 through June 2013, he failed to deposit $154,120 in cash receipts into a bank account he was required by Sears to establish and into which all store receipts were to have been deposited. Kilty admitted that he deposited the receipts into other personal bank accounts which he controlled.

Kilty admitted to the court that as part of the scheme, he created false documents to make it appear that the deposits had been made, including 47 fraudulent deposit slips and several fake bank reconciliation forms.

Additionally, Kilty admitted to the court that he created two counterfeit bank checks in the amounts of $99,000 and $28,319.75 made payable to Sears Hometown and Outlet, Inc., and that he provided the checks to a Sears district manager.

The matter was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the FBI.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lee H. Vilker.

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