Wayne County Attorney David P. Sutherland will stand trial for embezzling millions from clients, and he faces a new charge of embezzling from a vulnerable adult.
Sutherland appeared before the Grosse Pointe Farms Municipal Court on Monday (June 5) for a preliminary examination.
After hearing from six witnesses, the court found sufficient evidence to bind him over on:
- One count of Conducting a Criminal Enterprise, a 20-year felony
- Two counts of Embezzlement of $100,000 or more, 20-year felonies
- One count of Embezzlement from a Vulnerable Adult - $100,000 or more, a 20-year felony
Officials say Sutherland used his position as the personal attorney and trustee for Gretchen Carhartt Valade of Grosse Pointe Farms to embezzle millions from both her revocable and irrevocable trusts and her personally.
After the hearing, Sutherland was arraigned on a new charge of embezzlement of $100,000 or more from another client, the William Cardinal Trust.
“Handling a client’s finances with integrity and thoughtful consideration is one of the most important responsibilities of a trustee,” said Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel. “When the trustee’s actions serve to enrich themselves at the expense of their client, my Financial Crimes Division will intervene.”
A circuit arraignment of the Valade case is scheduled for June 26 at 9 a.m.
A probable cause conference on the Cardinal case is scheduled for July 26 at 12:30 p.m.