- Associated Press - Friday, June 6, 2014

CHICAGO (AP) - A former owner of a Chicago restaurant chain was sentenced to four years in prison for engaging in a check-kiting scheme designed to keep the business operating.

Chris Giannis pleaded guilty in April for his role in the scheme in which his father, Nick Giannis, also participated. The men owned the Boston Blackies restaurant chain at the time.

Prosecutors alleged the men deposited checks from different banks into accounts at two banks. They cashed the checks before it could be determined the accounts had insufficient funds. Officials say the scheme defrauded Charter One and Washington Mutual banks of nearly $2 million.

Nick Giannis, was sentenced earlier this year to 48-months’ probation. The restaurant chain filed for bankruptcy in 2009. It was later acquired by another restaurant operator.

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