Lafayette business owner sentenced for stealing nearly $300,000 from finance companies

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LAFAYETTE, La.(KLFY) – Leonard Espree, 56, formerly of Lafayette, was sentenced to 20 months in prison and five years of supervised release by U.S. District Judge James D. Cain Jr. for stealing nearly $300,000 from three finance companies.

Espree was also ordered to pay $294,292.12 restitution. He pleaded guilty April 3, 2019.

Espree was the owner and operator of Ameritek Office Solutions in Lafayette, which sold and serviced office equipment.

Espree submitted false documentation in the names of existing local businesses to three finance companies in 2015 and 2016 to obtain payment for office equipment supposedly supplied to these businesses, authorities said.

The three companies approved eight of the transactions for which Espree received a total of $294,292.12.

However, Espree never sold or delivered equipment to any of the businesses.

The FBI investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney David J. Ayo prosecuted the case.

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