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Friday, March 05, 2010

Thomas Jefferson High School Employee Arrested on Embezzlement Charges

Finance Technician Allegedly Stole $279,000 from High School to Fund Gambling and Credit Card Debt

March 5, 2010 - ALEXANDRIA, VA—Susan Thanh Litwin, 37, of Woodbridge, Va., was arrested today on allegations that she stole approximately $279,000 from Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJHS), a Fairfax County magnet school.

Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Shawn Henry, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office; and Colonel David Rohrer, Fairfax County Chief of Police, made the announcement after the charging documents were unsealed. Litwin is expected to make her initial appearance in federal court this afternoon.

“Theses are difficult financial times for many public institutions, and an employee who breaks that trust needs to be held accountable,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride. “We’re grateful for the help Fairfax County Police Department and the Fairfax County Public Schools provided to this investigation, along with the FBI agents who helped put together the evidence in this

According to a court-filed affidavit, Litwin served as a finance technician for TJHS since January 2007 and was responsible for receiving and depositing funds from various sources. These funds were used, in part, to support student athletics, classes, clubs, and other school activities. Litwin allegedly used the signature authority TJHS had given her to steal funds by writing checks to herself without authorization and by making counter-withdrawals from various TJHS bank accounts and depositing the funds into her personal bank accounts. From about March 2008 through January 2010, court records allege that she stole more than $279,000 through checks or withdrawals ranging from $2,500 to $35,000.

Court records indicate that in an interview, Litwin allegedly told law enforcement that the money was used to support a gambling habit that included trips to Las Vegas, Nev., and Atlantic City, N.J. She also allegedly stated that the theft was a result of extensive credit card debt and large mortgage payments on her home.

Authorities request that anyone with information regarding this case or similar allegations of fraud or corruption to call the FBI’s Northern Virginia Public Corruption and Government Fraud Tip Line at (703) 686-6225 or send an e-mail to: nova.corruption@ic.fbi.gov.

This case is being investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Fairfax County Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Mark D. Lytle is prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.

The charges announced today are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

1 comment:

tj student said...

Damn, what a blow to the school's budget and image...