The former bookkeeper for an equipment company in Burlington, Vermont, is facing charges of embezzlement after an accounts payable audit revealed she stole approximately $160,000 from her employer.
According to The Associated Press, Kimberly Brooks, who was in charge of financial record keeping and other accounting duties for Demarais Equipment, pleaded not guilty to three felony counts of wire fraud, check forging and interstate transportation of stolen money. Brooks worked as the company's bookkeeper for 13 years, and conducted the illegal scheme from April 2008 to March 2011 until an AP audit found discrepancies and an investigation was launched. Demarais Equipment has closed its doors, but it is not known if it was because of the embezzlement, the news source reports.
Authorities allege that Brooks managed to steal nearly $160,000 from the business by fraudulently issuing checks to herself and forging her supervisors' names, as she was not allowed to sign checks, states the Burlington Free Press. Brooks is also accused of taking cash deposits from Demarais' customers. She then deposited the money into her own bank accounts and used the funds to pay for personal expenses. Brooks will be required to forfeit all of the items she purchased, and she could face 10 years in prison as well as an additional fine.