Ottawa woman pleads guilty to embezzling $100,000 from Peru law firm

Resendez avoids prison after agreeing to make restitution

An Ottawa woman pleaded guilty Wednesday to taking $100,000 from a Peru law firm, but avoided prison by agreeing to make restitution.

Rosalina Resendez, 46, pleaded guilty to one count of theft, a Class 1 felony carrying 4-15 years in prison. The count alleged she took $100,000 from Olivero & Olivero (not to be confused with Louis Olivero & Associates, also in Peru) over a five-year span ending in late 2012.

However, in exchange for her plea and the promise of restitution — $22,000 up front plus $500 a month thereafter — Resendez was sentenced to 48 months probation plus time served.

When offered a chance to speak, Resendez said in a barely audible voice (the court stenographer asked her to speak up) that she was sorry for all the pain she caused. Judge Cynthia M. Raccuglia accepted her statement.

“You are sincerely sorry, I can see,” the judge said.

Ottawa defense attorney Joe Navarro declined comment after the plea hearing was concluded.

A civil lawsuit filed against Resendez by Olivero & Olivero alleged she misappropriated $375,000 and she destroyed and/or altered the financial records. A call to the law firm seeking comment was not returned Wednesday; but assistant La Salle County state’s attorney Jeremiah Adams said in open court the firm agreed to the terms of the plea and the lawsuit would be dismissed.

Tom Collins

Tom Collins covers criminal justice in La Salle County.