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Ex-Cherry Point employee admits to embezzlement

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

A former employee at Marine Corp Community Services (MCCS), which provides recreational and social services at Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station, has admitted she used a government credit card to embezzle approximately $74,000.

Questions remain whether she acted alone—or if her boss is in on the scam as well.

MCCS suspended both Leigh Valez and her boss, Bob Kenward, after a Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigation uncovered the theft. Valez entered her guilty plea in June.

Kenward has maintained his innocence. His attorney claims Valez admitted scanning Kenward’s signature on purchasing documents without his knowledge or consent.

Kenward appealed his suspension and even requested congressional help in a letter to U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones (3rd District). To date, Jones has not elected to become involved.

Note: Managers should regularly reconcile credit card and purchasing statements with actual receipts to ensure all the purchases are legitimate. Periodic outside audits can help detect and deter more sophisticated fraud.

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