Dothan Man Pleads Guilty to Embezzling Money from ASU

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A Dothan man pleaded guilty to wire fraud after he allegedly embezzled 367-thousand dollars from Alabama State University.

US Attorney Leura Canary said in a statement that 40-year-old James Michael Hinson was working as an accountant for ASU when he diverted money into an account he had opened in February 2005 using
ASU's taxpayer identification number without the university's authorization.

Canary, in a statement yesterday, said that from February 17, 2005 through April 3rd of this year, Hinson diverted checks payable to ASU totaling about $367,730.82 into the account. He used the funds to pay personal expenses, including credit card payments.

Hinson is set to be sentenced later this summer. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, a restitution order and a fine of up to 250,000 dollars or, if greater, twice the loss to ASU.

He was released on 25-thousand dollars bond pending sentencing.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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