Man pleads guilty to stealing $12,000 in cancer donations meant for dying friend

DENVER — A man charged with stealing $12,000 in cancer donations meant for a dying friend has pleaded guilty and repaid the funds, the Denver District Attorney’s Office said Thursday.

Scott Kesterson, 52, pleaded guilty in Denver District Court to to felony theft and computer crime.

He received a two-year deferred sentence and was ordered to pay $15,656 in restitution. Kesterson also was ordered to pay $3,831 for the costs of extraditing him from Montana, where he was arrested in August.

Prosecutors said Kesterson made the payments in full on Thursday.

From October 2013 to February 2014, prosecutors said Kesterson started a donation fund and solicited contributions for Denver attorney Kelly de la Torre, who was diagnosed with cancer.

De la Torre died in November 2013. She and Kesterson were friends and business associates, prosecutors said.

Instead of giving the approximately $12,000 in donations to de la Torre’s family, Kesterson used the money for his own purposes, prosecutors said.