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Woman accused of embezzling $1-m to feed gambling addiction

MILWAUKEE (WSAU-Wheeler News)  A Milwaukee woman is due in court December 20th for allegedly embezzling over a million dollars to support a gambling addiction.

49-year-old Janice Nieman was charged yesterday with three counts of felony theft and one count of identity theft. She was fired last July as a payroll specialist at Wheaton Franciscan Health Services in suburban Milwaukee. Nieman told police she got hooked on slot machines before she joined the health chain 15 years ago because she was depressed after losing a previous job.

Prosecutors said she used her payroll position to create false time off for almost 850 employees -- and she allegedly placed the wages for that time off into her own bank account. In April of this year, Wheaton started a using a new payroll system that allowed workers to keep track of their payroll data online. Authorities say the embezzlement scheme was cracked when a former employee came back, and noticed discrepancies in her online data.

Prosecutors said Nieman ran a total of $4-million through the slot machines at Milwaukee's Potawatomi Casino -- including $30,000 in a single day.

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