Woman faces 55 counts
Warrants allege massive forgery, credit card fraud
By Patrick Yost
A 43–year-old Rutledge woman faces 55 felony counts for allegedly stealing money from a Madison attorney while she was employed as a secretary and bookkeeper.
Rhonda Kay Robuck was arrested April 30 and charged with 32 counts of financial card transaction fraud and 23 counts of forgery in the first degree by City of Madison and Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) investigators.
Tom Davis, special agent–in–charge with the GBI, said Robuck allegedly took approximately $43,000 from the accounts of Madison attorney Charles Merritt during a two year period she was employed with Merrittt. Davis said warrants allege that Robuck used company credit cards for purchases and forged company checks for personal use.
The arrest comes after a more than six month investigation by the GBI. Robuck was terminated from the law firm in 2007, Alison Burleson, assistant district attorney, Ocmulgee District Attorney’s Office, said.
Moon said allegations against Robuck include charges that she used Merrit’s company credit card to register puppies with AKC, buy an invisible fence and pay cable television bills. Moon said warrants also allege that Robuck wrote several company checks to collection agencies, including a $10,000 check.
“It was a very broad and brazen employee embezzlement scheme where she took total advantage of her employer’s trust,” Moon said.
If convicted Robuck could face up to 326 years incarceration. Maximum sentencing for financial credit card transaction charge is three years for each count and sentencing for first degree forgery is 10 years, Moon said.
Robuck was released from the Morgan County Detention Center on a $45,000 bond. “It seems fair that she should have to post at least the amount she’s accused of stealing,” Burleson said.