By Associated Press - Friday, January 24, 2020

LOWELL, Mass. (AP) - A Massachusetts woman has pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $180,000 from a local animal hospital, federal prosecutors announced Friday.

Sasha Saulnier, 32, of Lowell, pleaded guilty to six counts of wire fraud in Boston federal court on Thursday.

Prosecutors said she’d been a client relations specialist at an animal hospital and had access to the clinic’s management software and accounting data.

They said she used that access to make nearly 500 false transactions over about four years that directly benefited her personal accounts.

Prosecutors said Saulnier issued refunds for items customers had not returned or never purchased in the first place. She also used the accounts of former clients to conceal her fraud, they said.

Prosecutors said Saulnier used the stolen funds to pay for lavish trips to New York City, the Bahamas and Las Vegas and other personal expenses.

Saulnier will be sentenced April 24 and faces up to 20 years in prison.

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