Former Illinois economic development chief pleads guilty to theft

A 2013 Phoenix law that adds "sexual orientation, gender identity or expression" to the city's nondiscrimination ordinance violated the freedom of speech and religious beliefs of two business owners, the Arizona Supreme Court said in a 4-3 ruling.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The former chief executive officer of a central Illinois economic development organization has pleaded guilty to a theft charge for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from it.

Eric Berglund of Springfield was sentenced to two years’ probation Wednesday and a second theft charge was dismissed under a plea agreement.

Prosecutors said the 42-year-old Berglund’s previously clean record and the payment of restitution to the Land of Lincoln Economic Development Corp. were factors in his sentencing.

Berglund declined to comment at the hearing.

He was fired in May after leading the economic development corporation for less than a year. The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports he was arrested on two counts of theft in June for allegedly stealing between $10,000 and $50,000.
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Information from: The State Journal-Register, http://www.sj-r.com

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