A former Missouri secretary of state has pleaded guilty to bank fraud, officials said.

A former Missouri secretary of state has pleaded guilty to bank fraud, officials said.

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The Missouri secretary of state used to write company checks to herself and then use them appropriated money for vacationtwo cars and a skid steer, federal authorities said.

According to authorities, Stephanie D. Carper wrote at least 44 checks to her account over a six-year period totaling at least $1,219,192.

She has now pleaded guilty to bank fraud in federal court, according to an Oct. 6 press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri.

iIn her guilty plea, Carper said that between September 2013 and September 2019, she received pre-signed checks from a Ralls County family farm business and put her name on the payee line. She also wrote down how much money she wants to take from the firm according to the signed plea agreement.

Carper wrote false explanations on deposit slips, and she wrote false descriptions of transactions in the business’s check register, according to court records. In many cases, authorities said she wrote checks that were for the company’s main supplier.

The checks were already signed by the company’s owner and his relatives so Carper could pay the vendors, authorities said. But now she “admitted that she took advantage of her position as a secretary.”

An attorney representing Carper did not immediately respond to McClatchy News’ request for comment.

According to court records, Carper used some of the money to buy a Nissan Murano SUV, a Toyota Tundra pickup and a Caterpillar 247 skid steer. Authorities said she also paid for vacations to Alaska and other destinations.

Carper, who now lives in Eufaula, Ala., is scheduled to attend a sentencing hearing on Jan. 9, officials said. She faces up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine, as well as restitution.

Ralls County is located in northeast Missouri.

Caitlin Alanis is a reporter for McClatchy National Real-Time who lives in Kansas. She is a graduate of Kansas State University with a degree in Agricultural Communications and Journalism.