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St. Bernard Sheriff's employee stole $40,000 in sales tax payments, report says

The amount of misappropriated sales tax funds was estimated to be about $40,000 based on preliminary investigation.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this June 15, 2018, file photo, 20-dollar bills are counted in North Andover, Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

CHALMETTE, La. — A St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office employee was fired in February for allegedly stealing $40,000 in sales tax collections after an independent auditor discovered the funds were missing.

new report released Monday by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor says the employee worked in the sales tax collection office and was alleged to have altered receipts and misappropriated sales taxes paid in cash.

The amount of misappropriated sales tax funds was estimated to be about $40,000 based on preliminary investigation. The Legislative Auditor’s report did not identify the employee but notes that they were fired in February 2021 following an Internal Affairs investigation by a third-party inspector.

Investigators said although there were controls in place for checks received to pay sales taxes, there were no controls for cash payments. The sheriff’s office no longer accepts cash payments for sales taxes, the report says.

The auditor’s report says that an investigation into the theft is still ongoing.

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