November 01, 2001
Meetings & Conventions: Incentive News

Lucent Planner Keeps Winners' Checks

A former administrative assistant for Hanover Township, N.J.-based communications firm Lucent Technologies has plead guilty to stealing more than $92,000 in the form of gift checks meant as incentives for employees. The thefts, which occurred between May 1998 and September 1999, were discovered through an internal audit.

According to the Daily Record, a Morristown, N.J.-based newspaper, Valerie Ivkovich was responsible for ordering and issuing American Express Gift Cheques for employees who earned them. Her defense lawyer acknowledged that Ivkovich kept the checks and cashed them for her personal use.

At press time, Ivkovich had accepted a plea bargain that calls for probation and a sentence of up to 364 days spent in a Morris County, N.J., jail.

According to Morris County Assistant Prosecutor Leslie Wade, the sentence could be waived if Ivkovich paid the stolen funds back by the end of October.

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