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Woman accused of embezzlement likely to avoid jail

A woman from Jackson Township has been found guilty of felony theft after she reportedly embezzled thousands from the Charleston Springs Golf Course in New Jersey. The woman, a former golf ranger, was responsible for cash management within the pro shop. She reportedly stole about $3,000 from her employer, which netted a variety of consequences. Authorities report that she was arrested on charges of third-degree theft on Jan. 24.

The woman plead guilty to the charges, a move that likely lessened the punishment she will face in connection with the crimes. She will almost certainly stay out of jail, instead serving probation and paying back the money she stole from the golf course. The woman will also be banned from working in any public office in the state.

An investigation revealed that the woman stole money from her company by falsifying sales data. The woman was responsible for collecting greens fees and maintaining a schedule for golfers using the course. She would change transactions so that golfers appeared to have received refunds for their rounds of golf. Then, the woman would pocket the money instead. The woman was accused of the embezzlement in January, after a four-month period of financial dishonesty. Investigators believe the misdeeds began in September 2012 and continued until that December.

The woman's sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 3. It is not clear whether she is free on her own recognizance.

In this case, the woman's decision to plead guilty likely played a major role in her ability to obtain a lenient sentence. Admittedly, $3,000 is a paltry sum compared to some fraud cases discussed in this blog, though the charges are no less severe. By pleading guilty, the woman was able to avoid a lengthy, costly trial for both the prosecution and defense. She also will probably receive a more lenient sentence in connection with the charges because of her decision to plead guilty.

Source: The Star-Ledger, "Jackson woman pleads guilty to embezzling $3,000 from Millstone golf course," Seth Augenstein, Feb. 16, 2013.

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