A former assistant to Washington County Circuit Judge Randall Lowe, who pleaded guilty in 2007 to stealing more than $16,000 from the judge’s office, now has been indicted on charges of stealing from a law firm.
Anna Laura Howell, 43, is accused in a two-count federal indictment with money laundering and mail fraud. Neither the federal prosecutor in the case nor Howell’s lawyer in the 2007 case would reveal the name of the victimized law firm.
According to the indictment, Howell used her position at the unnamed law firm to issue stop payment orders on various firm checks. She then redirected the funds to her personal use.
The accusations are similar to those brought in Washington County Circuit Court in 2006. In that case, Howell acknowledged writing checks from Judge Lowe’s judicial account to herself. She was sentenced to five years probation and ordered to repay nearly $16,400.
By Peter Vieth