Mescalero Woman Pleads Guilty To Embezzlement

Dec 10, 2013

A woman has pleaded guilty to embezzling nearly $8,700 in funds that belonged to the Mescalero Apache Nation tribe in New Mexico.

Prosecutors say 65-year-old Iris Peterson entered her plea Tuesday in federal court in Las Cruces to theft from a tribal organization.

She was accused of embezzling $8,695 between January 2007 and December 2011.

During that time, Peterson was a supervisory social worker employed by the BIA Mescalero Social Services Program.

Prosecutors say Peterson admitted cashing checks intended for juvenile clients who were receiving services from the Social Services Program and using the funds for her personal use.

According to her plea agreement, prosecutors say Peterson likely will get probation and must pay full restitution.

Peterson was released under pretrial supervision pending her sentencing hearing, which hasn't been scheduled.

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