Energy Dept. Employee Runs Up Hefty Phone Bill
An Energy Department employee and ten family members rung up approximately $19,000 in service charges on government-issued cellphones between March 2006 and August 2008, according to recent court filings.
Alva Yelverton, 40, pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government property on May 27 in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. She resigned her position and agreed to pay restitution to the Energy Department.
Yelverton earned $77,973 per year as a program support specialist in the department's Office of Policy and International Affairs, responsible for office moves and the distribution of keys and telephones. She was the office's main point of contact with cellphone provider Sprint and submitted the office's monthly cellphone bills to the Energy Department, including the charges from the ten phones she gave to family members.
"The Department takes these matters very seriously and we appreciate the work of the Inspector General and the U.S. attorney in this case," said Energy Department spokeswoman Stephanie Mueller.
Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 25 and Yelverton faces a maximum ten years in prison, but will more likely face a six month sentence, according to the U.S. attorney's office.
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| June 11, 2009; 2:47 PM ET
Categories: Agencies and Departments, Workplace Issues
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