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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Portland bank official blames Vicodin addiction for stealing money from vault, customer accounts in Oregon

The former operations manager of Portland's Rivergate Federal Credit Union was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison on Monday for systematically embezzling $408,062.38 from the bank.

Jade Carnahan, appearing before U.S. District Judge Marco A. Hernandez, accepted responsibility for her crimes. She blamed her actions on a serious addiction to Vicodin, a painkiller composed of hydrocodone and acetaminophen.

The 35-year-old Scappoose resident faced up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for bank larceny at the North Portland credit union. She pleaded guilty in April to stealing from its bank vault and customer accounts, including the funds of senior citizens.

Her embezzlement began in 2005 and ended in 2012, according to the U.S. attorney's office for Oregon.

Gregory A. Fowler, Oregon's top FBI official, said Carnahan was in a position of trust to guard the very money she stole.

"She broke that trust, using her access as a bank employee to feed a drug habit," Fowler said. "Addiction to prescription pain killers can be just as devastating as street drugs, such as crack and heroin."

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