An Anchorage man initially accused of forgery and theft of Alaska Permanent Fund dividends changed his plea in Juneau Superior Court on Monday.
Daniel Batalona, 64, was charged in October with three counts of first degree forgery and three counts of second degree theft. He entered a guilty plea to a single count of second degree forgery. The other charges were dismissed.
The initial charges were for three dividends disbursed in 2010 to grandchildren Alexis, Faith, and Destiny that were accepted and signed by himself and his son Zachary. They were then deposited into his credit union account. Each of the dividends was for $1,281.
Daniel Batalona said earlier that he deposited the checks for his grandchildren who moved to Hawaii with their father in 2009. He was going to hold on to the money until they got older. He said he already returned the money and he had rejected an earlier proposed plea deal that would’ve allowed him to avoid jail time.
Batalona will likely be sentenced to probation, suspended jail time, and pay a fine during the June 5th sentencing hearing.
Charges were also filed against 39-year old Zachary Batalona for unsworn falsification and theft. A warrant was issued for his arrest.
- About 4,500 acres of heavily-logged forest will return to wilderness under a deal involving the federal government and a Southeast Alaska Native corporation.
- Andy Larson, 79, and Matthew Hanes, 32, hoisted from S/V Rafiki about 170 miles south of Sand Point early Wednesday.
- The company that sent the first big luxury cruise ship through U.S. and Canadian Arctic waters is preparing the Crystal Serenity for a repeat performance in 2017. But one expert believes this year’s historic transit doesn’t mean the Arctic is likely to become a hotspot for global shipping anytime soon.
- Federal fisheries oversight required in some busy Alaska salmon fisheries