A federal grand jury has returned a 38-count indictment against former V.I. National Guard Maj. Sherrymae Morales, 54, charging her with theft of public money, wire fraud and false statements, U.S. Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe announced Thursday.
The indictment was returned Dec. 4, but was not unsealed until Wednesday, when Morales appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ruth Miller and entered a plea of not guilty.
She was released on an unsecured $25,000 bond.
According to the indictment, from 2010 until 2011 Morales was employed as a full-time employee with the Guard on St. Croix. At the same time she also held a fulltime contract position with the Military Personnel Services Corporation (MPSC,) which provides employee support services to members of the VING. The indictment alleges that Morales submitted time sheets to both the MPSC and VING for the same 40-hour work weeks over a period of 14 months.
If convicted, Morales faces up to 20 years in federal prison, according to Sharpe, who added the reminder that an indictment is a charging document and not evidence of guilt.
The case is being investigated by the United States Army Criminal Investigation Command-Major Procurement Fraud Unit, Defense Criminal Investigative Service and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Everard E. Potter.