Trial date looms for Austen Riggs ex-official charged with stealing

PITTSFIELD
— The former director of finance of the Austen Riggs Center, who allegedly
charged thousands of dollars of personal expenses to her corporate credit card,
will have a final pretrial conference next month before a trial is expected to
begin in November or January.

Elizabeth
Hakes appeared in Berkshire Superior Court for a Thursday, Sept. 19 pretrial
hearing where she was represented by her attorney, Thomas Donohue, Jr. of
Donohue Law, based in Pittsfield.

An Oct.
15 date was set for a final pretrial conference, serving as the last step
before the case is brought to trial in the coming months.

Hakes, a
Lanesborough resident, is accused of charging nearly $25,000 of personal
expenses to her corporate credit card over the course of one year.

In June,
she was indicted and arraigned in the Southern Berkshire District Court. The
charges were dismissed upon the request of the District Attorney’s office in
order to be brought forward by the higher court.

Similar embezzlement charges were brought against Hakes by her preceding employer, MassHire Berkshire Career Center, as previously reported by the Record.

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