Former University of Missouri employee sentenced for embezzling money
SPRINGFIELD — U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool sentenced former University of Missouri employee Carla Rathmann to four years in prison without parole and ordered her to pay $781,670 for embezzling money from the school, on Tuesday.
The University of Missouri hired Rathmann as an administrative officer at the Southwest Research Center in Mount Vernon in January 2000. She was in charge of receiving and paying bills, various accounting duties, payroll, scheduling meetings and organizing staff. The university fired Rathmann in September 2015 after officials discovered that she had used her university credit card to pay for personal expenses.
According to a news release, on June 6, 2016, Rathmann pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of credit card fraud.
Officials said Rathmann embezzled a total of $781,670 by submitting fake invoices and bills to the University of Missouri. Rathmann also admitted that she illegally used a university credit card for approximately $146,144 in personal expenses.
According to a news release, Rathmann used the money to gamble at area casinos, buy expensive cars, high-end appliances, pay for the remodeling of her home, take expensive vacations, purchase other personal luxury items and pay bills.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Carney prosecuted the case and the FBI and Missouri State Highway Patrol did the investigation.
Officials said the University of Missouri was instrumental in detecting the fraud, initiating the investigation and assisting law enforcement.