Missouri couple gets 30 months in prison for embezzlement

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 | 10:47 a.m. CDT

KANSAS CITY — The longtime president of a western Missouri water district and his wife have been sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for embezzling more than $390,000.

Stephen Collier and Sharron Collier of Rich Hill, were also ordered to pay $375,000 in restitution on Monday and forfeit their 120-acre farm to help satisfy that order.

In October, the couple pleaded guilty to mail fraud.

Since 1978, Stephen Collier served on the board of Public Water Supply District No. 4, which covers parts of Bates and Vernon counties. Sharron Collier was the district's clerk for 10 years until her dismissal in 2007.

The couple created a phony company called American Expressways, claiming that it was a consultancy doing business with the water district. They each opened credit card accounts and used them for personal expenses.

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