- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 17, 2017

WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) - A former employee accused of embezzling more than $2.8 million over nearly a decade from a Williston heavy equipment company is being sentenced this week in federal court.

Daphney Harstad, 44, is charged with wire fraud for allegedly dipping into funds while working as an office manager and bookkeeper for Borsheim Crane, the Williston Herald (https://bit.ly/2jjJI4h ) reported.

Authorities say Harstad used the money to buy luxury jewelry and other merchandise from companies, including Louis Vuitton, Tiffany and Co. and Michael Kors.

Court documents say Harstad allegedly used fraudulent checks from the company to pay for merchandise she ordered online.

Harstad pleaded guilty in the fall and faces a possible maximum sentence of 30 years. Harstad’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for Thursday.

“When the FBI got involved this lady was cooperative,” assistant U.S. attorney Clare Hochhalter said. “There was never an indictment returned because she was willing to admit what she’d done. If someone is cooperative and willing to admit their offense . we generally limit our recommendations to the lower end.”

The newspaper’s attempts to reach Harstad for comment were unsuccessful. Officials from Borsheim Crane weren’t available for comment.


Information from: Williston Herald, https://www.willistonherald.com

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