DENVER – A former assistant store manager for a Colorado Walmart was sentenced in Denver to federal prison for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars via a money laundering scheme.

U.S. District Court Judge Wiley Y. Daniel sentenced Justin Manning, 40, to 22 months in federal prison, followed by three years of probation for stealing more than $830,000 for wire fraud and money laundering, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Between 2012 and 2015, Manning was employed as an asset protection manager and assistant store manager at a local Aurora Walmart, a 2017 indictment said. Prosecutors said between in October 2013 through January 2015, Manning had access to blank “Money Network” checks and filled them out in the name of third parties. Manning “used his management positions” to steal cash from deposit bundles kept in a safe and replace the cash with the fake money network checks, the indictment said.

Stealing up to $5,000 at a time, Manning allegedly transferred the money to his private accounts and used it to buy a $16,252.67 wedding ring set and a $52,000 Toyota 4Runner for cash in 2014. Manning did not report the additional income on his tax returns, only reporting his Walmart salary of $50,000, according to the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation unit, which investigated the case

Manning was arrested Oct. 10, 2017 and was released on a $15,000 bond.

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