Ex-Traficant aide pleads guilty to theft from elderly woman

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) — An aide and longtime supporter of the late U.S. Rep. Jim Traficant has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $100,000 from an elderly woman with dementia.

The Vindicator reports 70-year-old Linda Kovachik, of Youngstown, pleaded guilty Thursday to felony theft.

Prosecutors say four counts of forgery were dismissed in a plea deal after Kovachik cooperated in a civil lawsuit and helped the 76-year-old woman recover money from a bank.

Prosecutors say they’ll recommend that Kovachik be sent to prison at sentencing on Jan. 18. The newspaper reports that Kovachik’s attorney doesn’t agree with that recommendation.

Kovachik worked for Traficant from 1985 until 1990 and from 2000 until his expulsion from Congress in 2002.

Traficant died in 2014 at his farm outside of Youngstown after a tractor tipped over on him.

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