Embezzlement of HUD funds puts former housing authority exec on probation

The ex-officer used federal funds to pay for gift cards used for personal expenses or given to family and friends

Embezzlement of HUD funds puts former housing authority exec on probation
A federal court has sentenced a former government housing executive to three years of probation over embezzlement of federal funds while she held the role of executive director for the Ocean City Housing Authority (OCHA) in New Jersey. She was also ordered to pay $8,050 in restitution.

Alesia Watson was previously charged with one count of embezzling federal funds received from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and administered by OCHA, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey. Watson had pleaded guilty before Magistrate Judge Karen Williams, who imposed the sentence.

According to prosecutors, Watson, as executive director, had access to two credit cards maintained by OCHA. From December 2013 through March 2015, she used the credit cards to pay for 60 MasterCard gift cards. Watson used these to pay for personal expenses unrelated to OCHA or gave these to friends and family members. To pay for the credit carbs bills related to the gift card purchases, Watson then used federal funds received from HUD and administered by OCHA.

The investigation was carried out by special agents of the HUD, Office of the Inspector General, and the Secret Service.

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