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Press Release

Fayette County Woman Pleads Guilty to Wire Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of West Virginia

WVDEP Employee Made Over $61,000 in Fraudulent Purchases with State Credit Card

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Fayette County woman entered a guilty plea to the felony offense of wire fraud, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart.  Yvonne Dozier,  50, of  Boomer, faces up to 20 years of incarceration, a $250,000 fine, and three years of supervised release when she is sentenced on February 13, 2020.  She will also be required to pay restitution to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection  (WVDEP) where she was previously employed.  Stuart praised the work of the United States Secret Service, the West Virginia State Auditor’s Office, and the WVDEP. 

“This office has made the prosecution of public corruption a priority.  There’s no such thing as a little bit of corruption, but this was no little bit,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart.  “Dozier stole over $61,000 for such critical personal needs – wink, wink – as a vacation rental in North Carolina.  This is the type of outrageous stuff that the people of West Virginia don’t deserve.  Trusted public employees who steal from taxpayers need to pay a heavy price and Ms. Dozier will learn her fate when her sentencing occurs in February."

Dozier previously worked for the WVDEP as an accounting tech.  She was assigned a West Virginia state purchasing card where she was permitted to make authorized purchases on behalf of the WVDEP.   These cards could not be used to make personal purchases.  Dozier devised a scheme where she used the state purchasing card to make personal purchases and fraudulently wired credit card information.  She then altered invoices and modified the state accounting software to adjust the purchases and make the fraudulent purchases appear as though they were legitimately made.  From 2014 to 2018, Dozier made hundreds of unauthorized purchases, costing the state of West Virginia $61,753.72.  Dozier gave a Mirandized statement to a Special Agent with the United States Secret Service, in which she admitted to misusing the state purchasing cards to make personal purchases, altering invoices, and ultimately passing these expenses onto the State of West Virginia..  The fraudulent purchases moved money in interstate commerce both from the actual purchase with the credit card and the State of West Virginia’s paying her Visa card expenses.  Dozier used her state purchasing card to pay for personal expenses such as electric, insurance, cable, and cell phone bills, and vacation rental homes.  Dozier no longer works for the State of West Virginia. 

United States District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorney Erik S. Goes is handling the prosecution. 

 

 Follow us on Twitter: @SDWVNews and @USAttyStuart 

 

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Updated November 18, 2019