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Man sentenced for embezzling $65-95K from C-A-L Ranch

Crime Watch

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REXBURG — A 36-year-old Rexburg man was sentenced Monday morning after pleading guilty to stealing tens of thousands of dollars from C-A-L Ranch in Rexburg.

Judge Gregory Moeller sentenced Jeffrey Kortright to serve 6 years in prison with 2 years fixed and 4 years indeterminate. However, Moeller suspended the sentence and ordered Kortright to serve 5 years probation and 365 days in jail.

Kortright embezzled between $65,000 and $95,000 by returning items that were not purchased and then putting that money onto personal financial cards, according to Madison County deputy prosecuting attorney Robert Wood.

He was originally charged with felony grand theft by embezzlement and one count of computer crime by using a device to obtain money or commit fraud. One count was dropped as part of a plea agreement.

James Archibald, Kortright’s defense attorney, recommended that his client be put on probation and receive credit for 65 days spent in jail.

“He embarrassed himself and his family by stealing,” Archibald during the sentencing hearing.

He said Kortright confessed to his crime and feels guilty, embarrassed and wants to make it right.

Kortright worked at C-A-L Ranch for almost a decade and Archibald noted that this crime was out of character for Kortright as it was his first felony.

Wood recommended Korthright be incarcerated for two years fixed with five years indeterminate. Wood said this incident wasn’t isolated and it wasn’t just one theft that occurred, but multiple thefts every month.

Moeller said his main concerns with the case was to ensure that Kortright was held accountable and that the business was reimbursed.

“This is a serious crime that’s worthy of punishment,” Moeller said in court before asking Kortright why he would steal as he didn’t seem to be under economic duress.

Moeller noted he was around $30,000 in debt, but $20,000 was for a vehicle.

Kortright didn’t have much to say other than that he had anxiety trying to live paycheck-to-paycheck. He also said he was under the strain of having to deal with his spouse’s medical expenses.

He was embezzling money in order to pay for the expenses, but the amount owed was eventually taken care of through an insurance claim.

“You know better than this. You were raised better than this,” Moeller said.

EDITOR’S NOTE: EastIdahoNews.com inadvertently reported the wrong number of years Kortright was sentenced to serve in prison. We have corrected the mistake and apologize for the error.

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