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Press Release

Spokane Woman Sentenced For Embezzling Over $28,000 From Coeur D’Alene Indian Tribe

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Idaho

COEUR D’ALENE – Debora J. Zimmerman, 46, of Spokane, Washington, was sentenced today in United States District Court to five years’ probation and four weekends in jail for theft from an Indian Tribal Organization, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Zimmerman to pay $28, 275.93 in restitution. She pleaded guilty to the charge on September 21, 2012.

According to court documents, between September 2008, and September 2010, Zimmerman, who was the Finance Operations Director for the Coeur d’Alene Tribal Housing Authority, stole money by issuing herself unauthorized paychecks, making unapproved purchases, and through other means.

“Those who are entrusted with public funds have a solemn obligation to act in the public interest,” said Olson. “Ms. Zimmerman violated the trust placed in her by the Coeur d’Alene Tribe. She put personal gain ahead of her public obligation. Appropriately, as a part of her sentence, Ms. Zimmerman must reimburse the Coeur d’Alene Tribe the money that she stole. I commend the thorough investigation in this case.”

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General.

Updated December 15, 2014