By Terri Eyden
Alan Jonas, who was accused of writing 161 checks to himself from the First Baptist Church in Southington, an elderly woman suffering from Alzheimer's disease, and a New Britain‒based nonprofit group, is now in jail after his string of thefts totaling more than $500,000.
On July 17, Jonas, a former CPA, was sentenced in New Britain Superior Court to twelve years in prison, suspended after eight years served, followed by five years of probation. He was also ordered by Judge Hillary B. Strackbein to pay restitution; the amount to be determined through the probation process. Once on probation, he's not allowed to be employed in any position that gives him access to money.
The sixty-five-year-old, formerly of New Britain, Connecticut, was first arrested January 20, 2011, according to warrants from the Chief State's Attorney's Office and the Southington and New Britain police departments. Jonas pleaded guilty in May of this year to three counts of first-degree larceny, one count for each of his victims.
- From November 2004 to October 2008, Jonas embezzled more than $394,000 by writing approximately a hundred checks as the chairman of the finance committee of the First Baptist Church in Southington.
- From April 2009 until February 2010, he stole $72,000 from an eighty-two-year-old woman with Alzheimer's disease. What's even worst is that he served as the woman's court-appointed conservator. He wrote thirty-five checks to himself, leaving the woman's estate $65,000 in debt.
- From January 2007 to February 2010, while serving as treasurer of a nonprofit music group, Jonas wrote himself ninety-six checks totaling approximately $35,255.
And that's not all. In 1999, Jonas was convicted of embezzling $22,000 from Middlesex Hospital, where he was CFO, to buy pornography. He repaid the money, got treatment for psychological problems, and served three years' probation. While employed at the hospital, he earned a six-figure salary.
According to the Hartford Courant, Assistant State's Attorney Kevin Shay said, "Jonas is not like other perpetrators who commit crimes because they are in desperate circumstances. This is not a man who was trying to feed a family." Shay added that Jonas is "educated, bright, and was capable of finding gainful employment."