Accountant Sentenced in $800K CU Embezzlement
A former accounting assistant at the $104 million Pinal County Federal Credit Union in Casa Grande, Ariz. was sentenced to one year in prison and ordered to repay part of the almost $800,000 she confessed to stealing. The U.S. District Court of Arizona ordered Jennelle Rena Curtis to pay $555,571 in restitution and $200 in court assessment fees.
As part of a plea agreement, Curtis pleaded guilty to a two -count criminal information charging her with embezzlement. A criminal information is often filed when a suspect cooperates with prosecutors, intends to plead guilty or provides information that leads to additional arrests.
In her June 2, 2013 plea agreement, Curtis said she issued about 100 PCFCU checks totaling at least $780,697 for her personal use from 2008 to 2011, including two checks totaling about $226,400 that were deposited into a bank account belonging to her mother, Janet Long.
Curtis was ordered to pay $555,571 to Cumis Insurance Society, Inc., which covers PCFCU,
and to self-surrender by July 7, 2014 to the Bureau of Prisons or U.S. Marshal’s Office, the sentencing document said.
The court documents do not explain what happened with the additional $225,000 mentioned in her 2013 plea agreement.
When Curtis was arrested last year, local media reported that she had worked a decade at the credit union and was a mother of four young children whose 23-year-old husband was shot and killed at a truck stop in March.
According to an Aug. 1, 2012 article in the Phoenix New Times, her parents, Howard and Janet Long, claimed that about $200,000 of the money Curtis took from the credit union was rightfully theirs because Janet Long had given her daughter about $200,000 from a 401K account and asked her to put it into a different account.
Authorities with U.S. Assistant Attorney’s Office would not say whether additional charges are pending or if an investigation is continuing.
After her release from prison, Curtis will be on supervised probation for a period of five years.
Her plea agreement called for the prosecutor to recommend a sentence of between 24 and 30 months in prison, but did not preclude the defendant from seeking a shorter sentence.