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Former union secretary sentenced to probation for embezzlement

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MISSOULA - The former secretary-treasurer for Butte Painters' Union 720 was sentenced to five years of probation for embezzling more than $15,000 from the union.

Michael J. Kennedy, 46, pleaded guilty in November to felony embezzlement.

At sentencing Thursday, U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy also ordered Kennedy to pay $15,621 plus interest in restitution.

Between Oct. 22, 2003, and March 22, 2005, while Kennedy was the financial secretary for the union, he wrote 84 unauthorized checks to himself, for cash and to third parties.

Court records state that Kennedy also forged the names of other union officials and made false entries into the union's record books in an attempt to conceal the crime.

The thefts were discovered when nine checks written by Kennedy to local bars were rejected due to insufficient funds.

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