Employees and board members wept in disbelief and anger as they expressed the heartbreaking betrayal they felt after learning the longtime CEO they trusted and admired stole more than $1.9 million from their credit union's vault and stuffed the cash in her purse 433 separate times over 17 years.

Kathryn Sue Simmerman, the former manager of the $17.2 million Shoreline Federal Credit Union, was sentenced to six and a half years in federal prison by U.S. District Court Judge Robert Holmes Bell in Grand Rapids, Mich. Jan. 4. He also ordered her to pay $1.9 million in restitution.

Bell gave Simmerman only one year less than what prosecutors requested based on federal sentencing guidelines. She pleaded guilty in July to embezzlement and structuring transactions to evade reporting that nearly destroyed the North Shore, Mich.-based cooperative.

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