- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 1, 2015

LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) - A DeRidder woman has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $1.3 million from her employer.

U.S. Attorney Stephanie A. Finley, in a news release Tuesday, said 52-year-old Lisa H. Ernst entered a conditional guilty plea to one count of wire fraud before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kathleen Kay. The plea will become final when U.S. District Judge Patricia Minaldi accepts it.

According to evidence presented at the hearing, Ernst stole $1,351,260 from Amerisafe in Deridder, where she worked from May 13, 2003 to March 4, 2014 in various capacities in the accounting department, including as an assistant manager. She made about 142 direct interbank transfers from the company’s account to her personal accounts.

Ernst faces up to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and restitution. Sentencing is scheduled July 16.

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