Ex-Rutgers staffer sentenced for theft from medical school

May 16, 2019 GMT

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A former staffer who stole more than $87,000 from the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Essex County prosecutors say Sondra Bell used some of the money to pay off her son’s college tuition. She had pleaded guilty in January to theft by deception.

The 55-year-old Newark resident was an administrative assistant at Rutgers for 24 years. Her thefts started in January 2017 and were discovered in April 2018, when she was asked to buy airline tickets for her boss to attend a medical conference.

Bell told him there wasn’t enough money in the account to pay for the flights and admitted stealing the money. She then asked him to cover the missing money, but he declined and authorities were informed.