- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

MACON, Ga. (AP) - A former Hancock County probate judge has been sentenced to serve nearly two years in prison for stealing federal funds from Hancock County.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Macon says Marva Rice was sentenced Thursday to serve a year and nine months in federal prison and to pay restitution of $63,864.70 to Hancock County.

Rice pleaded guilty in October to two counts of theft of federal funds. Prosecutors say Rice was responsible for collecting fines and fees and depositing them in the probate court bank account. But an FBI investigation revealed that she failed to deposit nearly $44,000 in 2012. Then, in 2013, after the FBI was investigating, prosecutors say, she used county funds to pay $20,000 of her personal legal fees.

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