ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – Kinloch Mayor Keith Conway plea guilty Tuesday of using Kinloch city funds to pay personal expenses, fund personal travel, and purchase a Florida vacation condominium timeshare; and attempting to influence Kinloch City Officials to provide false information to federal law enforcement about the criminal charges pending against him.
According to court documents, and statements made in Court by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hal Goldsmith, between January 2009 and March 31, 2011, Conway stole, diverted and embezzled city funds to pay for several personal Bahamas vacation cruises, airline tickets to Las Vegas and Ft. Lauderdale for himself and friends, the down payment and loan payments on a time share condominium in South Florida, personal credit card bills, personal federal income taxes, as well as Ameren electric bills for a city owned residence where he was living rent free.
Further, following his original indictment on the fraud and embezzlement charges, and while on bond, Conway provided false information to Kinloch City Officials including several members of the Board of Aldermen relative to the criminal charges pending against him and urged those officials to provide false information about those charges contained in the original indictment. Conway was originally indicted on the fraud charges in May, 2011 and was charged in a superceding indictment June 2, 2011 with the additional witness tampering charge.
“Mr. Conway finally admitted he stole money from his own community when the City of Kinloch couldn’t even afford to pay its employees,” said Special Agent in Charge Dennis L. Baker of the FBI St. Louis Division. “After he was indicted, he lied about the city owing him money to try to cover up his selfish crimes.”
Conway, 47, of Kinloch, MO, pled guilty to one felony count of wire fraud, one felony count of federal program funds theft and one felony count of witness tampering.
Sentencing has been set for November 18, 2011.
Wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of twenty years in prison; federal program funds theft carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison; and witness tampering carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison. Each charge also carries is also subject to fines up to $250,000.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The mayor of the St. Louis County town of Kinloch is scheduled to be in federal court Tuesday for a change of plea hearing.
Keith Conway was indicted in the spring for wire fraud, federal program theft and witness tampering. He pleaded not guilty. Messages left with his attorney about the purpose of the change of plea hearing were not returned.
Federal prosecutors say Conway spent city funds on Bahamas vacation cruises and airline tickets to Las Vegas and Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The indictment also alleges he spent city money on a Florida time-share condominium, personal credit card bills, federal income taxes and personal electric bills.
The witness tampering charge accuses Conway of lying to city officials about the allegations and encouraging them to lie on his behalf.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press