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Elgin attorney accused of cheating clients
by Harry Hitzeman | Daily Herald Staff

William Chesbrough

 

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Published: 11/13/2009 4:18 PM

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A longtime Elgin attorney faces prison time after being accused of stealing more than $140,000 from clients.

Elgin Police arrested William C. Chesbrough this week at his home in the 1400 block of Grand Pointe Boulevard in West Dundee.

The 56-year-old attorney faces two felony theft charges and one count of financial exploitation of the elderly, said Elgin police and the Kane County State's Attorney's office.

If convicted of the most serious crime, he faces between four and 15 years in prison.

Elgin Deputy Police Chief Jeff Swoboda said authorities began investigating after two people reported to police that checks issued by Chesbrough either bounced or were canceled.

An elderly woman in September told police that a $124,000 check from Chesbrough to her regarding an estate matter was returned for insufficient funds, Swoboda said.

In October, another person told police that a check for $24,000 that Chesbrough was holding in escrow for a new home construction was canceled by him before the person could cash it, Swoboda said.

"(Chesbrough) was holding money in escrow for a home that ultimately was never built," Swoboda said.

Phone messages left Friday at Chesbrough's home and Elgin office were not immediately returned.

Chesbrough is free after posting 10 percent of $30,000 bond and is due in court on Dec. 11.

It was unclear Friday whether he faced an investigation by the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission as a spokesman there could not immediately be reached.