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2 sentenced to prison for siphoning funds from high school

Two California residents, a mother and her daughter, were sentenced to four years on Nov. 10 after they were convicted on embezzlement charges. According to reports, the mother was an account clerk at the high school in Alhambra when she and her daughter embezzled the money from the school's student government over a five-year period.

Prosecutors said that the 62-year-old woman was working as an account clerk for the student body at Mark Keppel High School while the 31-year-old daughter was working as the school's volunteer cheerleading coach. The pair were accused of siphoning money from the school account between 2007 and 2012. They allegedly concealed thefts by destroying or manipulating banking and accounting records.

Following an 18-month embezzlement investigation by the Alhambra Unified School District, both individuals were charged. In July, the mother reportedly pleaded "no contest" to eight felony counts, which included misappropriation of student funds and embezzlement. The daughter pleaded "no contest" to grand theft.

If a person is accused of stealing funds from an interstate commerce, federal program or federally regulated market, they could potentially face federal charges instead of state charges. This means that consequences are likely to be far more severe if a guilty verdict is reached. For example, an accused person could face a prison sentence in addition to being required to repay what was taken. However, a criminal law attorney may investigate the allegations if a person is accused of misappropriating funds or embezzlement. The lawyer might argue that the prosecution has a lack of evidence proving guilt.

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