Former Paducah bookkeeper sentenced to 12 years in prison

Associated Press - April 28, 2009 12:54 PM ET

PADUCAH, Ky. (AP) - A former Paducah bookkeeper who pleaded guilty to 188 counts of felony theft was sentenced to 12 years in prison and ordered to pay $1.2 million in restitution.

Stephanie Benefiel was sentenced Monday in McCracken Circuit Court.

The Paducah Sun reported that during the sentencing, Circuit Judge Jeff Hines said the extent of her crime was vast, calling it Paducah's version of the Bernie Madoff scandal.

Benefiel had been a bookkeeper for 18 years for Purchase Engineering. She faced up to 20 years in prison if the case went to trial.

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