Former Fair Board member to plead guilty

ALPENA — A former Alpena County Fair Board member accused of embezzling funds from local organizations will not go to trial, his lawyer announced in court Monday.

Bradley Avery, of Alpena, will accept a plea deal at a court hearing scheduled for May 6, according to defense attorney Dan White.

Avery is charged with one count of embezzlement of $20,000 or more but less than $50,000, two counts of embezzlement of $1,000 or more but less than $20,000 from a nonprofit or charitable organization, and three counts of using a financial transaction device illegally after he allegedly stole money from the Alpena Agricultural Society and Future Farmers of America during his tenure as Fair Board treasurer.

White and county Prosecutor Ed Black have from now until the next hearing to work out the details of the amount of restitution Avery will owe once he accepts the plea deal, according to orders from Judge Michael Mack in the 26th Circuit Court.

The exact amount Avery is accused of embezzling is arguable because of the length of time over which the allegations arose, according to Black, leading to what he called “restitutional wiggle room” until an exact amount is resolved upon as part of the plea deal.

Julie Riddle can be reached at 989-358-5693 or jriddle@thealpenanews.com.