Former CEO of Naperville adoption agency gets 4 1/2 years for theft, fraud

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Robert Geniesse. Photo from DuPage County sheriff’s office.

Robert Geniesse. Photo from DuPage County sheriff’s office.

(WHEATON) The former head of a Naperville adoption agency who was convicted of stealing company funds to pay for lavish trips and shopping sprees was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison Thursday.

Robert Geniesse, the former CEO of Our Children’s Homestead, was previously found guilty of theft, personal use of charitable trust funds, wire fraud and forgery, according to a statement from the Illinois Attorney General’s office.

Geniesse, 52, used business credit cards to pay for a $1,000 tab at Morton’s Steakhouse in Naperville; a $600 shopping trip to Binny’s Beverage Depot; and luxury goods at Neiman Marcus, Pottery Barn and Ethan Allen, the statement said.

Other purchases included “lavish” trips, tickets to professional sports games and $3,800 in flights overseas, the statement said. None of the expenses were connected to his role as CEO of the organization.

Geniesse allegedly fled to Germany in 2012 after the attorney general’s office filed an indictment against him. He was extradited back to DuPage County and was convicted in a bench trial in August, Madigan’s office said.

Judge George Bakalis sentenced Geniesse to 4 1/2 years in prison at a hearing Thursday at the Wheaton courthouse, the statement said.

“The defendant betrayed the charitable mission of the organization he led, instead choosing to enrich himself and steal from his group’s donors and the families who rely on its services,” Attorney General Lisa Madigan in the statement.

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