TUCSON, Ariz -- A husband and wife have been indicted on fraud-related charges for allegedly taking money from a Tucson school geared towards career and technical education students.
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne said on Wednesday that Melinda and Enrique Carpio are facing multiple charges of fraudulent schemes and theft.
The Pima County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the Carpios after receiving a report from the Chief Financial Officer of Joint Technical Education District, which is where Melinda Carpio worked as an Accounting Services Manager.
While preparing the report, the CFO noticed a discrepancy between a school expenditure and the accompanying vendor payment. An internal audit was subsequently conducted, and several inconsistencies were discovered.
Further investigation went on to reveal that Melinda Carpio had allegedly been directing payments to her husband by creating fictitious vendors.
Investigators discovered that approximately $300,000 had been embezzled from JTED and deposited into the Carpios’ bank accounts.
“This is a very serious matter,” said Horne. “The Pima County JTED serves hundreds of students who rely on the school for outstanding career and technical education programs. It is very disturbing to think that taxpayer dollars that were intended for educational needs may have been misused, and my office will vigorously prosecute this matter.”
Melinda Carpio has since been fired by JTED.