Attorney general's gumshoes nab 70-year-old in county probe

Rob Luke Apr. 26, 2007, 12:00pm

Greg Abbott

For the pilfering public employees of Texas, age is apparently no refuge from Attorney General Greg Abbott's investigations.

Abbott announced April 23 that lawyers from his office will co-prosecute 70-year-old Marilyn Lout, a former Shelby County assistant auditor, on two first-degree felonies.

Lout was arrested yesterday by Shelby County Sheriff's deputies accused of diverting $190,000 from the county's Indigent Health Care fund to relatives' bank accounts. She is charged with organized criminal activity for theft and misapplication of fiduciary property.

Shelby County District Attorney Lynda K. Russell asked the attorney general's office for help prosecuting Lout because she was previously a county employee. Abbott gave no other details about Lout's employment.

"Texans will not tolerate government officials who steal from the taxpayers and violate the public's trust," Abbott stated Monday. He added that his office will "aggressively prosecute the perpetrators of this outrageous scheme."

But perhaps not too aggressively, Abbott's release added. Because of "concerns about her health," the septugenarian "will be allowed to remain in her home in lieu of physical arrest."

Abbott's prosecutors, who have seized bank records from Lout's alleged co-conspirators, will bring the case against Lout to a Shelby County grand jury on May 3.

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