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Vermillion, MN (KROC-AM News) - A former elected official in Dakota County is facing a federal fraud charge.

The US Attorney for Minnesota says 70-year-old Maryann Stoffel is accused of misappropriating over $650,000 in public funds while she served as the Clerk of the Township of Vermillion. According to the charges, the Hastings woman would forge the signatures of other Township officials or have Township officials sign blank checks by claiming she was using them to pay Township bills. Instead, the prosecutors say the money was transferred into her bank account.

It is alleged the theft of the public funds took place between December 2012 and October of last year. During that time, Stoffel allegedly covered up the fraud scheme by excluding the unauthorized payments to herself on the township's annual report.

She faces one count of wire fraud. Officials say her initial appearance in federal court has yet to be scheduled.

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