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2 accused of embezzling money from city

On Oct. 24, it was reported that a California woman and her sister were accused of embezzling approximately $80,000 from the city of Rancho Mirage. It was believed that woman used her position as a city employee to siphon the funds for more than two years.

The 50-year-old Indio woman was the senior manager in the Building and Safety Code Compliance Division. As part of her duties, she was allowed to authorize expenses associated with code enforcement work. She, along with her 40-year-old sister, allegedly opened an account for a company that then charged the city for work that was never performed. The invoices for the deposits were alleged to be falsified as a result.

According to the complaint, there were 65 separate occasions that occurred between March 27, 2015, and May 12, 2017. Although the amount of the invoices all varied, they were usually under $2,000 each. The sister allegedly filed tax returns in both 2015 and 2016 indicating that the company had been paid by the city in those years. The former city worker and the sister were both charged with two counts of embezzlement and one count of conspiracy.

Embezzlement can occur when a person is accused of stealing money or goods from his or her employer. If government funds or U.S. government property was believed to have been stolen, the person could face federal charges. Depending on the amount allegedly stolen, the person could face a jail sentence, fines and the requirement to return what was claimed to be stolen. A criminal law attorney could represent a person facing criminal charges for an alleged embezzlement scheme by launching an independent investigation into the case and negotiating with the prosecution.

Source: Palm Desert Patch, "Former Rancho Mirage City Employee To Be Charged With Embezzlement", Oct. 24, 2017

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