When a worker misappropriates money this is in his or her care, the legal and financial ramifications are often severe. A conviction for embezzlement, theft or other related crimes in Montana can lead to years of imprisonment and heavy fines, which are assessed in addition to the reparations that typically accompany such a case. This could be the fate that awaits a Bozeman man who was recently accused of stealing nearly $100,000 from Montana State University and a city basketball league. The man, an MSU employee, was in charge of paying referees for the MSU intramural sports programs. He held a similar position as the manager of the Bozeman City Men’s Basketball League. According to police detectives, the man repeatedly paid MSU referees with money from the city bank accounts. He is also accused of writing checks to himself and to his wife using the City of Bozeman’s checkbook. According to authorities, the man appropriated more than $80,000 in cash and used an additional $16,000 to pay for golf club memberships, fast food and gasoline. He now faces two felony counts of theft, charges that could result in a years-long prison sentence. Theft comes in many forms, and charges can stem from a wide variety of circumstances. In all cases, however, theft charges can have a significant detrimental effect on the future of the accused - even if the convicted party avoids jail time. In particular, a conviction for theft can have serious consequences in the workplace for years into the future, as many employers are reluctant to hire a worker who has been found guilty of theft in the past. This is particularly true for white-collar workers who can expect to handle company money over the course of their employment.
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