- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 12, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - A New Mexico woman who pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $800,000 from her employer has been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison.

Prosecutors say 54-year-old Lori Whitaker also must pay about $816,000 in restitution.

They say Whitaker changed her plea to guilty in May 2018 and was facing up to a 20-year prison sentence in the case.

Whitaker, a former resident of Carlsbad, was an office manager for the Otis Mutual Domestic Water Consumers and Sewage Works Association.

The non-profit association provides potable water and a wastewater system to more than 4,300 people in Otis, New Mexico.

Whitaker allegedly transmitted funds between March 2015 and February 2017 as part of a scheme to defraud the association.

Prosecutors say the 75 wired transactions ranged from $416 to nearly $16,000.

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