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A man stole $1 million from monks in Kentucky. Now he wants out of repayment.


A man charged with thieving extra than $1 million from a monastery in Kentucky desires out of having to pay restitution soon after staying introduced early from prison above COVID-19 concerns.

The legal professional for John E. Hutchins, 46, of Bardstown, argued in a movement that since the purchase by Gov. Andy Beshear commuting Hutchins’ sentence didn’t specifically require restitution, he shouldn’t have to fork out.

Prosecutors will oppose the ask for, stated Assistant Commonwealth’s Lawyer Arch C. McKay.

The commonwealth thinks the truth that Hutchins’ sentence was commuted does not relieve him of the purchase to repay the Abbey of Gethsemani, McKay said.

Hutchins experienced been the accountant for the monastery for a number of many years ahead of he was charged in 2014 with thieving far more than $1 million in between 2008 and 2014.

Trappist monks established the Abbey of Gethsemani in Nelson County in 1848. The monks invest hours in prayer, worship and get the job done day by day, commencing at 3:15 a.m.

It is regarded the oldest continuously working monastery in the place and was the dwelling of Thomas Merton, who lived at the abbey from 1941 until finally his death in 1968, and wrote dozens of books.

Thomas Merton: A Trappist monk at the Abbey of Gethsemani, Merton wrote additional than 70 publications, like his autobiography The Seven Storey Mountain. He also wrote essays and testimonials.

The monastery also is perfectly-recognized for its sales of fruitcakes and fudge, which assistance the mission.

Hutchins pleaded guilty to 87 charges of complicity to dedicate theft and 87 costs of complicity to unlawful access of a computer. He was sentenced in December 2014 to 20 several years in jail.

Past August, nevertheless, Beshear signed an buy commuting the sentences of Hutchins and additional than 600 other condition inmates. The intent was to guard inmates and corrections workers from COVID-19 by lowering the populace in prisons and jails, Beshear stated.

The men and women produced had been all non-violent, non-sexual offenders, and had to either be within six months of finishing a sentence, or individuals inside of five years of obtaining out of prison who have been considered especially susceptible to COVID-19 mainly because of their age or professional medical problems.

Hutchins, who would have been suitable for parole in April 2025, was produced previous Aug. 27 from Blackburn Correctional Complex in Lexington, according to court docket data.

As element of Hutchins’ sentence, he forfeited his household, two motor vehicles, $42,000 in dollars and particular assets that incorporated two major-display screen TVs, a zero-flip mower, 6 watches, exercise devices, jewellery and pcs.

The sentence involved an more $600,000 in restitution to the monastery, in accordance to court files.

Hutchins has made modest payments — $130 on March 11 and again on April 1, for instance — but owed $591,704.76 as of this 7 days, stated Nelson Circuit Clerk Diane Thompson.

On June 4, attorney Jude Hagan filed a movement for Hutchins trying to find to conclude his restitution.

The movement explained that even though Beshear’s commutation buy provided a amount of situations, these types of as a quarantine interval right after release if required, it did not make restitution a issue of Hutchins’ launch.

That signifies the maxim “expressio unis est exlusio alterius would implement,” Hagan reported.

That is a strategy in the regulation that the specific point out of 1 factor is the exclusion of yet another.

The commutation buy could have built restitution a issue of launch, but it did not, Hagan argued.

Hagan said in an job interview that he thinks Hutchins is working in the design industry. He stated he couldn’t comment additional on the circumstance.

A spokesman for the monastery declined comment on the ask for.

A century-old ginkgo tree at the Abbey of Gethsemani in Nelson County was brought to the monastery from Asia by Edmond Obrecht, who was abbot from 1898 to 1935.

A century-aged ginkgo tree at the Abbey of Gethsemani in Nelson County was brought to the monastery from Asia by Edmond Obrecht, who was abbot from 1898 to 1935.



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