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Former Sheriff Misused Public Funds and Property

Marvin J. Lipfird, the former Sheriff of Harlan County, has been indicted for the theft of public funds and property.

On Thursday, a federal grand jury in Lexington returned an indictment charging Lipfird, 58, with theft of property from a federally funded program.

The indictment alleges that Lipfird abused his former position by misusing funds and property belonging to the Harlan County government.  For example, the indictment alleges that Lipfird stole money from a fund that was intended for use in controlled drug purchases.  Additionally, the indictment alleges that Lipfird sought reimbursement from the Harlan County government for numerous personal expenses, including food, alcohol, hotel rooms, and a subscription to a dating website.

The indictment also alleges that Lipfird caused Harlan County to pay a number of other fraudulent expenses, including duplicate payments for travel reimbursements and subscriber fees for a mobile telephone issued to a personal acquaintance.  Overall, Lipfird is alleged to have taken thousands of dollars’ worth of funds, goods, and services during his tenure as Harlan County Sheriff.

Kerry B. Harvey, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, and Amy Hess, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, jointly announced the indictment.

The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The indictment was presented to the grand jury by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew T. Boone.  A date for Lipfird to appear in court has not yet been scheduled.  He faces up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.  However, any sentence following a conviction would be imposed by the Court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statutes.