ST. LOUIS - A former Illinois elementary school principal who embezzled over $100,000 from his own school has been convicted of a federal felony. Roy Joseph Monti, 54, of St. Louis, Missouri, entered a guilty plea this morning to a single count of transporting stolen money across state lines.

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According to court documents, Monti previously worked as the principal of St. John the Baptist Elementary School in Smithton, Illinois. In a stipulation filed with the court, Monti admitted stealing $113,061.87 from the school between March 2017 and November 2019.

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During that time, Monti repeatedly withdrew cash from the school’s bank account for his own personal use. On many of the withdrawal slips, Monti wrote a purportedly valid purpose for the withdrawal, but these explanations turned out to be false and fraudulent. Instead, Monti simply kept the money for himself.

Because he lived in Missouri while working in Illinois, Monti often carried large amounts of stolen cash across state lines. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 7, 2021 at 2:30 p.m. at the federal courthouse in East St. Louis, Illinois.

Monti’s sentence will be informed by the federal sentencing guidelines and federal law. He could receive as much as ten years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. This case resulted from a referral and investigation by the FBI, with significant assistance from the Smithton Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Peter T. Reed.

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