- Associated Press - Monday, August 18, 2014

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - The former treasurer of a southwest Missouri anti-crime group has been ordered to repay nearly $3,300 he stole from the group.

Joplin resident Matthew Paige served as treasurer of Heartland Crime Stoppers from July 2012 to April 2013, when the group’s directors noticed problems in its finances and requested an audit.

Paige was charged with theft last October and pleaded guilty in May. A judge on Friday placed him on five years of probation and gave him 30 days to repay the stolen money or face up to seven years in prison.

Heartland Crime Stoppers was a nonprofit group that offered rewards for tips in solving crimes. The group shut down earlier this year for lack of funds.

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