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With Sentence Nearing Completion, Due Still Owes Covington

The former Covington finance director who was sent to prison after it was revealed that he stole nearly $800,000 from City Hall over a dozen years will soon see his sentence expire.

Bob Due was released from prison in March of this year after spending less than four years behind bars. At the time, he was placed on mandatory release supervision, a common procedure by the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

That six-month period will expire on October 18.

Kenton County Commonwealth's Attorney Rob Sanders asked a Kenton County judge to extend that period to ensure that Due continues to pay back the money he stole from the City of Covington, which was part of his original sentence.

More than $441,000 is still owed, Sanders told The River City News. Due was originally ordered to pay back more than $731,000.

The City of Covington currently receives Due's monthly pension check and also received half the sale of Due's former home in Independence, Sanders said. The city could only get half, because Due's wife also owned the home, and was not subject to the criminal penalties.

Kenton Circuit Judge Gregory Barlett said that he did not have jurisdiction to extend a parole period, but would hold Due in contempt of court if he ever stops paying the restitution. Each contempt charge could come with a 6-month jail sentence.

Sanders expressed concern that there wouldn't be a parole officer looking after Due when the sentenced expires later this month.

"His pension payment is going to continue to go to the city indefinitely," Sanders said. "However, Mr. Due told the court that he is currently unemployed, and once we find out he has gainful employment, we will seek some amount of money over and above what he's paying in the pension payment."

Due served nearly fifteen years at Covington City Hall, starting in 1999. He began his self-enriching scheme three years later.

After Due's arrest, then-Kentucky Auditor of Public Accounts Adam Edelen investigated the depth of the deception.

Due would sneak into the city building after hours and, after creating two fake vendor names, would write a check to one of those vendors, enter payment information, print the check, delete the check's history from the printer to avoid detection, change the name in the system back to the original vendor's name, and then deposit the money into a personal account.

Due was only caught when he got sloppy, RCN reported at the time.

In August of 2013, a fraudulent check was left on the printer and discovered by another employee in the finance department who did not recognize the name on it. The check was reported to Due, who was the department head, and who called it no big deal, a mis-print.

The name on that check was Due's wife's, who used her maiden name, and was unaware of the criminal activity.

When a second fraudulent check was discovered by the same employee, the same name appeared by a different vendor number was used. The check was brought to then-City Manager Larry Klein and city solicitor Frank Warnock and suspicion fell on Due.

The trusted finance director who had served multiple mayors and city managers had acted in this manner sixty-eight times for a total of $793,000 stolen from Covington City Hall.

In the months leading up to his guilty plea, Due attempted suicide twice.

Written by Michael Monks, editor & publisher