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ST. LOUIS • A former employee's embezzlement cost a Rolla technology company $1.8 million, a federal indictment claims.

Leaman George Crews III, 44, was hired as the director of information systems for Brewer Science in 2001, a June 7 indictment says. He was given a company credit card to buy software and computer equipment for the company, but used the card from May 2, 2008, to Aug. 11, 2017, to make what appeared to be purchases from a store in Los Angeles, the indictment says.

Crews would then falsify expense reports to try to justify the payments, the indictment says.

The money was really going to a PayPal account Crews set up in the name of his elderly neighbor, the indictment says.

Crews was indicted on five felony counts of wire fraud. He turned himself in Tuesday, prosecutors said. His lawyer could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

The indictment also seeks the forfeiture of more than $1.8 million linked to "proceeds" traceable to the alleged crime, including a home in St. James, Mo.

Alan Gerson, Brewer Science’s chief legal offficer, said in an emailed statement that after the company discovered Crews’ actions, they fired him and contacted federal investigators.

"We cooperated with the FBI and the US Attorney’s Office during their investigation giving them our full support so that they could prosecute Leaman Crews to the fullest extent of the law," Gerson said. "Brewer Science believes its employees are its most valuable asset. For a long-time employee to so wrongfully abuse that trust is shocking and reprehensible and will not be tolerated.” 

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