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Kentucky school finance director accused of embezzling $1.5M

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Posted at 7:21 AM, Jan 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-07 07:21:37-05

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky public school district's finance director has been accused of embezzling $1.5 million from the system over nearly 10 years, district officials confirmed.

Franklin County Schools administrator Lesley Wade resigned last summer amid an FBI investigation into the allegations, Superintendent Mark Kopp said. Wade has since reached a plea agreement with the FBI, Kopp told The State Journal on Monday. He said he was given clearance to comment on the case, but added that the school district doesn’t know the details of the agreement. An FBI spokesman declined to comment.

The federal agency informed the district in June that it was investigating Wade after a credit union alerted investigators it received a suspicious check, Kopp said at the time. The district launched its own internal investigation and uncovered additional fraudulent checks deposited by Wade that it then turned over to the FBI, he added.

Wade is accused of creating fake invoices from vendors the district worked with, then doctoring checks to divert the funds to herself, the system's investigation revealed.

The district says it will work with the FBI and federal prosecutors to seek restitution.

Wade worked for Franklin County Schools for 19 years and held multiple roles in the finance department, the newspaper reported.