APG employee to serve six months for stealing from youth academy

A Middle River woman was sentenced last week to six months in jail for defrauding the federal government through the Freestate ChalleNGe Academy at Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Lynn Carol Williams, 56, sentenced May 6 by U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett, will also serve six months of home detention with electronic monitoring as part of three years of supervised release for wire fraud in connection with a scheme to misuse the Freestate Challenge Academy corporate purchasing card, causing losses of more than $107,493. 

Freestate Challenge Academy is a Maryland National Guard program at Aberdeen Proving Ground.

According to her plea agreement, from October 2007 through February 2011, Williams was an administrative aide at Freestate ChalleNGe Academy and was authorized to use the Academy's corporate credit card to make purchases for it. She was also required to prepare a monthly expense report, which included the purchasing card billing statement, original receipts, copies of the approved requisition forms and a log of activity on the purchasing card. Once her supervisor approved the expense report, it was forwarded to the State of Maryland Military Department, which paid the account balance on the corporate purchasing card.

Williams admitted that from February 2008, through October 2010, she used the corporate credit card to buy gift cards and to purchase items over the Internet for her personal use. For example, on May 18, 2010, Williams used the corporate credit card to purchase six gift cards, which she then used to pay for two airline tickets for her and a friend to travel to Los Angeles. To conceal her fraud, Williams prepared false logs of the card activity and used her work computer to prepare fictitious receipts, to give the impression she was using the card to make legitimate purchases on behalf of the program, such as for office supplies, snacks for program participants and other legitimate items.

U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the FBI, Defense Criminal Investigative Service and Aberdeen Proving Ground Police for their work in the investigation. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Joyce K. McDonald, who prosecuted the case.

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