Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty announced Thursday that Mark Lime, former Deputy Director of the Criminal Division of the Cuyahoga County Clerk of Courts plead guilty to 37 felony charges including; 18 counts of tampering with records, 18 counts of unlawful use of a computer system, and 1 count of theft in office.
As part of the Lime's plea, he is required to pay $8,715 in restitution. Sentencing has been scheduled for September 10, 2013 at 8:00 a.m. in Judge Kathleen Ann Sutula's courtroom.
Mark Lime, 57, of Parma, held his position as Deputy Director from 2002 until August 2011. While employed by Cuyahoga County and working in his capacity, Lime stole approximately $8,500 in incoming bond payments. Lime had two methods of theft which included, taking a victim of crime fee that was payable on top of any bond that was posted by criminal defendants.
Before 2009, the victim of crime fee was $45 and after 2009, the amount increased to $85. Lime would either pocket the fee and manipulate court records to cover his tracks, or he would simply steal the money without docketing the payment.
Lime's second theft scheme involved bond judgments. If a defendant failed to appear for court, the bond companies had to pay the clerk's office 10% of a bond. If the bonding company failed to pay the judgment, it should have been excluded from any further bond work.
Lime instructed his staff that only he was to handle the money for bond payments. Lime would subsequently steal cash bond judgments. He would either accept the bond judgment, and would either manipulate court records to cover his tracks or fail to docket the payment altogether.
"Mark Lime allowed his greed to abuse his position of public trust. He disgraced not only himself, but also the hard-working, honest public servants who serve the taxpayers on a daily basis," said Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty. "We want to send a message that public corruption in Cuyahoga County will be vigorously prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."
Lime was terminated from his position on September 15, 2011. This case was the culmination of a multi-year investigation by the Cuyahoga County Inspector General, Sheriff's Department, Clerk of Courts, and lead investigating agency, the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification.
"We sincerely appreciate the efforts of all of those individuals who helped bring Lime to justice," said Prosecutor McGinty.
Assistant County Prosecutors James A. Gutierrez and Matthew Meyer prosecuted this case.
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