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Former Idaho DEQ employee gets federal prison term for school-bus contract fraud

A Boise couple who defrauded the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality of hundreds of thousands in federal grant funds – and while they were at it, damaged Idaho school buses and caused a need for thousands in costly repairs – was sentenced in federal court today by U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge. Jorge Garcia, 50, a DEQ employee who submitted a fraudulent bid to do the federally funded work and then awarded the contract to himself and his wife, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. His wife, Karen, was sentenced to five months of probation with 10 months of home detention with electronic monitoring, also followed by three years of supervised release. The two also must pay restitution; you can read the U.S. Attorney's office's full announcement here. “The Garcias violated the public trust,” said U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson. “Today’s sentencings make clear that abuse of positions of trust and intentional misuse of taxpayer money will result in sure punishment.”


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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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