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Woman Gets Time In Federal Prison For Stealing Homeless Aid

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DETROIT (WWJ/AP) - An Oakland County woman who admitted to stealing $380,000 from a program for the homeless has been sentenced to 32 months in federal prison.

Linda Linseman was sentenced this week after pleading guilty four months ago to stealing government property. The plea deal signed by the 55-year-old Waterford woman says she spent the money on herself or allowed others to enjoy it.

Linseman was seeking just a year in prison. Ahead of the hearing, defense attorney Christopher Andreoff said a punishment was is in order, but extensive psychological counseling for Linseman should be a priority, too.

The case arose from Linseman’s employment as a program manager for Lighthouse of Oakland, a non-profit organization based in Pontiac that’s dedicated to helping the homeless.

During a four year period starting in late 2008, Linseman misdirected funds designated for rental housing for the homeless to her friends and relatives who were listed as phony landlords, according to court documents. She even paid her own rent in this manner.

“Ms. Linesman abdicated the responsibilities of her trusted position to line her own pockets. In the process, she not only breached the public trust, but also stole funds intended to provide basic shelter for those in our community who need it most,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Paul Abbate said in a statement.

The investigation of this case was conducted by special agents of the FBI, and the Offices of Inspector General for the Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Homeland Security.

TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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