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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Tennessee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Former Office Manager Sentenced to 51 Months for Fraud

 

Memphis, TN – A Tipton County woman has been sentenced to 51 months in federal prison for fraud. U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant announced the sentence today.

According to information presented in court, in 2017, Cynthia Shellenberger, 52, was hired by Dozertrax USA of Drummonds, Tennessee as an office manager/bookkeeper. Between May of 2017 and March of 2018, Shellenberger systematically defrauded the company of $164, 761 by using company funds to pay for her personal expenses. Company owners Ron and Sherry Clowes uncovered the fraud when Shellenberger was out of the office on sick leave.

On May 14, 2019, during the sentencing hearing before U.S. District Court Judge John Fowlkes Jr., Sherry Clowes informed the judge that due to the fraud, she and her husband are struggling to keep the company operating. Shellenberger has a lengthy history of theft and fraud convictions. Judge Fowlkes sentenced Shellenberger to 51 months' of imprisonment, followed by 3 years of supervised release. As a condition of her release, Shellenberger was ordered to make full restitution to the company.

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "Financial fraud can happen anywhere, and can be devastating to local businesses. The defendant used her position of trust and authority to steal proceeds for her personal benefit, and her dishonesty has been exposed. We are pleased that justice has been achieved on behalf of the victims, and we commend the FBI and TCSO for their outstanding investigation in this disappointing case. Wherever fraud occurs in the Western District of Tennessee, this office will be prepared to hold offenders accountable."

The FBI and Tipton County Sheriff’s Office investigated this case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney David Pritchard prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

Contact: 
Cherri Green Public Information Officer Cherri.Green@usdoj.gov 901-544-4231
Updated May 15, 2019