Richard Jefferson recently received a form of justice for a major financial assault committed against him. His former personal assistant, accused of stealing millions from him, was finally convicted.
According to justice department, Theodore Itsvan Joseph Kritza was sentenced on Tuesday to 70 months in prison, followed by five years of probation. U.S. District Judge Cindy K. Jorgenson sentenced him.
Kritza previously pleaded guilty to bank and wire fraud. In 2017, according to reports, Krtiza was charged with steal 7 million dollars of Jefferson.
When it all comes crashing down
Additionally, Kritza was also ordered to pay $4,794,874 in restitution to Jefferson in the case that began in the early 2000s.
According to the DOJ, in April 2005, Jefferson hired Kritza to serve as his personal assistant, where among his duties was to take care of paying his bills and day-to-day responsibilities.
However, Kritza allegedly profited and fraudulently obtained funds from 2005 and 2012. According to the DOJ, Kritza illegally obtained Jefferson’s funds by “falsifying the victim’s signature on more than two dozen documents, including business loans, line of credit applications and power of attorney.”
Additionally, Kritza allegedly opened a bank account in the victim’s name by forging his employer’s signature, concealing his use of Jefferson’s personal funds.
Kritza allegedly executed a massive fraud on Jefferson’s multiple sources of income, including the sale of a condo, his salary, and his endorsement contract. Then the perpetration began.
According to the DOJ, Kritza introduced a lavish lifestyle to her family with the stolen funds. From luxury cars and homes to vacations, private school tuition for a child, and business investments, Kritza seemed to live life.
He even tried to buy a plane, according to reports.
NBA player’s personal assistant sentenced to 70 months for theft of $4.7 million: Theodore Itsvan Joseph Kritza of Superior, Colorado, was sentenced to 70 months in prison for bank and wire fraud. https://t.co/IcHdWBV9KG
— FBI Phoenix (@FBIPhoenix) April 21, 2022
The feds are watching
“We see this scenario over and over again,” U.S. Attorney Gary Restaino said. “A confidant abuses a position of trust and embezzles someone else’s property. Thank you to our FBI partners for their hard work on the investigation.
“For years, Theodore Kritza took advantage of the trust he had gained with the victim and cheated him out of his hard-earned money and savings, choosing greed over trust. Today Kritza discovered the cost of his scheme,” said Sean Kaul, special agent in charge of the FBI’s field office in Phoenix.
“This conviction sends a clear message that fraud is a serious crime, with serious consequences. The FBI remains committed to obtaining justice for all victims of fraud. »
Several agencies were included in the case, including the FBI, which investigated, and the Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Section of the US Attorney’s Office, Tucson, for the prosecution.
It is unknown where Jefferson and Kritza met, but the latter is formerly from Chandler, Arizona and now lives in Superior, Colorado.
Jefferson, who graduated from Phoenix Moon Valley High School in 1998, went to the University of Arizona under Hall of Fame coach Lute Olson from 1998 to 2001. Although he didn’t had only an 84-game career, he led the Wildcats to the 2001 national championship game, where they ultimately lost to Duke.
Jefferson was the 13th pick in the 2001 NBA draft. He won an NBA title in 2016 with the Cleveland Cavaliers and now works as an ESPN analyst.