She should have hired our lame ass county attorney and asked for the garbage nazi (AKA Wappes) defense,

Minnesota woman gets 42 months for stealing $1.7 million from employer, gambling most away
By Tom Cherveny, Forum News Service Today at 6:15 p.m.

MINNEAPOLIS — A Bird Island woman who has served as a caregiver to her two grandchildren and described as honest and giving to others will serve 42 months in federal prison for stealing $1.7 million from her former employer.

Diane Marie Eiler, 48, was sentenced to 42 months in prison and three years of supervised probation, and ordered to make $1,738,459 in restitution to AgQuest Financial Services of Morgan during a court appearance Friday in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis. The former director of accounting for AgQuest in Morgan had pleaded guilty April 15 to one count of wire fraud, according to information from the U.S. Attorney’s office in Minneapolis.

Eiler is accused of taking the money from 2007 through November 2015 by stealing company checks from the desks of her co-workers. She wrote the checks to herself and hid the theft by creating false entries, according to the prosecuting attorney, U.S. Assistant District Attorney Joseph H. Thompson.

She spent nearly all of the money on a gambling addiction, according to the court records.

Eiler lost more than $1.3 million at Minnesota casinos between 2006 and 2015, and gambled more than $1.6 million at Jackpot Junction in Morton in 2009 alone, according to court records.

Prosecuting attorney Thompson charged that Eiler “systematically abused the trust of her employer” to steal the funds.

Eiler was earning a $75,000 annual salary at AgQuest when her employer discovered a problem with a wire transfer. She disclosed that she had been stealing funds and voluntarily admitted her guilt, according to her attorney, Robert Lengeling of Minneapolis. He asked the court to sentence her to probation rather than prison.

“Eiler has a gambling addiction that overtook her life,” Lengeling stated in a motion to the court. He asked for probation to allow her to continue assisting in the care of her two young grandchildren. Her son has had drug addiction problems, and Eiler helped him while also assisting as a foster parent and stable influence in the lives of the two grandchildren.

Friends and family members also wrote District Judge Patrick J. Schiltz asking that she be spared a prison term so that she could continue to be present for the grandchildren. They described her as honest and said she fully realizes the severity of the crime she committed and her gambling addiction.

She has been participating in treatment for a gambling addiction, according to her attorney.

Federal sentencing guidelines call for a sentence of 41 months to 51 months in prison in this case. The severity of the sentence is reduced by her early admission to the crime and cooperation.

In asking that Eiler serve prison time for her offense, the prosecuting attorney told the court that her decision to steal the $1.7 million “was not a decision born of economic necessity. It was a decision she made in order to fund her own gambling habit,’’ stated Attorney Thompson.

AgQuest had filed a civil lawsuit in state courts seeking restitution of the funds, but it was dismissed without prejudice in June. Eiler’s attorney told the court she had offered to liquidate her retirement account to make partial restitution. He noted that her most recent employment paid $10 an hour and she faced a precarious financial future in returning to the workforce after a lengthy prison sentence and federal felony conviction.

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