Ex-office manager from New Castle stole $700K from car dealership

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The former office manager at a Pittsburgh-area car dealership has pleaded guilty to federal fraud and false tax return charges stemming from her theft of $700,000 from the business.

Sixty-one-year-old Deborah Cassini, of New Castle, pleaded guilty Thursday and will return for sentencing before a federal judge in Pittsburgh on Nov. 20.

Investigators say Cassini accessed the bank accounts of South Hills Volkswagen online to make more than 160 payments on her credit card accounts as well as six car payments. She also gave herself 98 additional unauthorized paychecks and otherwise skimmed cash from the business and cashed business checks for her own benefit.

The thefts occurred from 2006 to 2011 and were hidden by Cassini who made fake accounting entries and issued bogus financial statements for the business.

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