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Theft and Fraud In Clerk Of Courts Office?

POTTSVILLE — Newswatch 16 has learned that an investigation is underway into the Clerk of Courts office in Schuylkill County. The District Attorney called it possible fraud and theft.

Steve Lukatch is Schuylkill County’s Clerk of Courts. He’s been in office for 26 years.

Officials said they’ve uncovered that for six months, Lukatch’s car payment was being paid with taxpayer’s money. Lukatch denied wrongdoing and insists he made an honest mistake.

“There was a mistake made in six months where that payment was made, and I’ve already cleared that transaction and I moved that from my personal account into that account because on that account and the personal account nine numbers are the same.” Lukatch said.

In a recent audit by County Controller Christy Joy, he came up with 13 questionable issues concerning how money is spent in the Clerk of Courts office.

“We feel there are significant irregularities so we’ve turned it over to the D.A. and the Board of Commissioners.”

D.A. Christine Holman confirmed that state police and the F.B.I are investigating the Clerk of Courts office in Pottsville. Holman said the audit is important evidence.

“I think those words would describe best what I have read, theft or fraud,” said Holman.

First Assistant D.A. Maria Casey agrees.

“There are certain anomalies, for example having 16 bank accounts, I don’t know of any row office that has 16 bank accounts,” said Casey.

D.A. Holman said she’s  considering asking a Judge to remove Lukatch from office.

“The D.A’s  office would have to prove certain illegalities, and right now I think we have a good base for that.”

Lukatch said he’s surprised to hear about the D.A’s possible plans.

“That’s entirely up to her, but I think she should get the whole story before she does anything,” said Lukatch.

The audit of the Schuylkill County Clerk of Courts office continues, however there’s no word as to when the state police or F.B.I. investigations will be complete.

10 comments

  • trashland

    gee, the truth is coming out just like luzerne county, what is it gonna take til loose lips finally opens their mouth and it call comes tumbling down,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

  • Charly Lucky

    There was a mistake made in six months where that payment was made, and I’ve already cleared that transaction and I moved that from my personal account into that account because on that account and the personal account nine numbers are the same.” Lukatch said
    Even if the account numbers are the same, the routing numbers have to be different. Who in their right mind, believes his statement????????

  • matt

    This is a outrage i owe them like 3000 for some weed ive been on probatoon for years now from a guy who cheated on his wife while on cpunty time the cops hang ppl in cells on shenandoah judges try n get there kids buddies off with murder now there using my fines to pay there car loans when i cant even drive a block without smashing a crater sized pothole the feds need to lock up these scumbag cops judges and paper pushing losers

  • Christy Joy

    As an elected official, I report to the People of Schuylkill County. When I found out that the Clerk of Courts Office had not been audited by the Schuylkill County Controller’s Office since 2004, I made this a priority. My report is attached to the link. http://www.christyjoy.com

  • Me

    This area is so sad. Nothing but theft, deception, greed and they just kepp getting away with it and nobody steps in. Why isn’t all this money that is stolen reimbursed to the taxpayers. Taxpayers are due billions from the theft and greed from all these people. How much has Pa taken from their people ?
    This is just absolutely sickening anymore. This country is going to hell real fast and nobody cares. Pa sucks. Pa sucks. Pa sucks !!!!

    • Eric

      Do NOT compare this area to the rest of the country. This region is a dumping ground for unwanted garbage, human especially. Religious radicals, sex offenders and certain white ethnic groups known for alcoholism and violence have been moving here in large numbers since the coal boom. Since local politicans are usually chosen from the local people, in this case scum, how can you expect this area to prosper? Any decent person has either left this area or is preparing to leave to escape street gangs, meth and the ignorant local alcoholics. The only people interested in gettting involved with local politics or businesses are doing so to take advantage of the corruption of this area or they know this area is the only place they can fit in. Your complaints are ridiculous, but not surprising. Oh and the reason why no one cares about Pennsylvania is because they know most are uneducated addicts who are all talk and no follow through.

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