MONTPELIER (AP) -- A 51-year-old Plainfield woman has pleaded not guilty to charges she embezzled more than $50,000 while working as a claims examiner for the state of Vermont.

Lisa Peduzzi of Plainfield appeared in court in Burlington on Monday. She remains free pending trial.

Peduzzi resigned earlier this month from her position as a claims examiner in the office of risk management division of the administration agency. Authorities say she set up bogus claims against the state and used the money to pay her property taxes and buy boats, automobiles and jewelry.

Court documents say that when confronted by police, Peduzzi told state troopers she was making the fraudulent claims because she was behind on her bills. Court personnel say Peduzzi has not been assigned an attorney.


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