Man convicted of defrauding at least 14 Utah disabled people loses appeal

Tuesday , February 06, 2018 - 5:00 AM

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Court of Appeals has upheld eight felony convictions against a man who prosecutors said diverted $11,000 from disabled clients over a two-year period and used the money for personal purchases, including a Las Vegas vacation, concert tickets, televisions, jewelry and expensive shoes.

Attorneys for Jordan Jack, 32, citing double jeopardy concerns, argued to the Appeals Court that a second-degree felony communications fraud charge should have been merged with seven third-degree felony charges of exploitation of a vulnerable adult.

RELATED: Employee of care service allegedly stole from disabled clients

But in its Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018, opinion, the court said 2nd District Judge Ernie Jones of Ogden correctly allowed the separate charges. The court pointed out that the communications fraud charge encompassed fraud committed against seven additional victims.

In a probable cause statement in October 2014, a Utah Attorney General’s Office investigator said Jack devised a scheme to siphon money from the accounts of people with disabilities. The crimes occurred in 2012-14 while Jack worked for Chrysalis, an Orem-based company that provided a money management system for clients of the Utah Division of Services for People with Disabilities.

According to court documents, Jack created phony receipts and false account statements to conceal the diversions, but personnel in Chrysalis’ Riverdale office, which serves clients in Weber and Davis counties, noticed discrepancies. State investigators said they found evidence that at least 14 people’s funds were stolen.

Jones convicted Jack in a bench trial in August 2015. On Oct. 21 of that year, Jones sentenced the Clearfield man to seven terms of 0-5 years in prison on the exploitation convictions and 1-15 years on the fraud charge. But the judge suspended all eight prison terms and sentenced Jack to 180 days in jail.

Jack also is serving 36 months of probation. Court records show he has paid back the $11,394 in restitution ordered by Jones.

Efforts to contact Jack’s attorney, Rudy Bautista, were not immediately successful Monday.

You can reach reporter Mark Shenefelt at mshenefelt@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @mshenefelt and like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/SEMarkShenefelt.

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