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Federal Railroad Administration Employee Arrested for Theft of Government Property

On June 1, Contonja Saunders, a Financial Management Specialist formerly of RITA, currently with FRA, was arrested for theft of government property. According to the information, during approximately April 2007, Ms. Saunders stole five U.S. Government cell phones and distributed them for her personal use and the use of her family members. Ms. Saunders allegedly abused her financial management position by making herself the Verizon designated account representative without authorization and then entered DOT computer accounting systems to approve DOT payments on the Verizon account to which the stolen phones were registered.  To avoid detection, Ms. Saunders allegedly changed the Verizon billing address from DOT to her home address and enlisted the aid of a DOT intern to field Verizon account notifications when she transferred to a new position. Ms. Saunders was released on her own recognizance, with the condition she remains in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.  The intern involved in the scheme was released from Federal Service. The total dollar loss to the U.S. Government as a result of Ms. Saunders's theft exceeds $30,000.

Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the government, all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.