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Date: 07-28-2021

Case Style:

United States of America v. Paul Eric Collins

Case Number: 1:03-cr-00882

Judge: Virginia M. Kendall

Court: United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Cook County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office

Defendant's Attorney:

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Description: Chicago, Illinois criminal defense lawyer represented Defendant charged with misappropriating more than $1.1 million from four employers and three lending institutions.

PAUL ERIC COLLINS, 55, of Naperville, Ill., pleaded guilty last year to wire fraud. U.S. District Judge Elaine E. Bucklo imposed a 98-month prison sentence Wednesday after a hearing in federal court in Chicago. Judge Bucklo also ordered Collins to pay $1,159,414 in restitution to the victims.

The sentence was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI.

“Collins stole funds from his employers, even though he knew that they desperately needed those funds to operate their businesses,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacqueline Stern argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum. “Collins stole from the victims for his own wholly selfish ends.”

Collins was an accountant who handled the finances for four employers from 2013 to 2018. During that time, Collins stole more than $1 million from the companies by writing corporate checks to himself, his wife, and phony companies he created. Collins also fraudulently withdrew money from ATMs and charged personal expenses on company credit cards. He attempted to conceal the thefts by making Ponzi-type payments to certain victims.

Collins also stole more than $70,000 from three lenders by obtaining loans based on false representations. Collins fraudulently used the identity of one of his employer’s owners and falsely represented that the owner personally guaranteed the loans. When Collins failed to repay the full amount of the loans and the lenders sought repayment, the owner was left having to dispute the fraudulent guarantee.


Outcome: The defendant is hereby committed to the custody of the United States Bureau of Prisons to be imprisoned for a total term of twenty-four (24) months. The defendant shall surrender for service of sentence at the institution designated by the Bureau of Prisons before 2:00 p.m. on 5/17/04. Additional imprisonment terms. Upon release from imprisonment, the defendant shall be on supervised release for a term three (3) years. Additional supervised release terms. Defendant shall make restitution in the total amount of $209,855.17. Schedule of payments.

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