Danielle Steel's PA sentenced for embezzlement
22nd April 2010
Author Danielle Steel's former personal assistant has been jailed after pleading guilty to embezzlement.
Kristy Watts was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison for fraudulently cashing cheques worth $768,000 (GBP 498,124).
She also confessed to spending Steel's credit card reward points and paying herself more than her contracted annual remuneration package.
Watts, who earned USD 200,000 a year working for Steel, was fired in 2008.
She claimed that her decision to embezzle the money was driven by 'envy and jealousy'.
Chief district judge Vaughn Walker ordered Watts to pay an additional USD 60,000 for tax evasion. She will also have to complete 400 hours worth of community service after serving her time in prison.
Steel is a multi-millionaire romantic novelist who has sold more than 500 million copies of her books worldwide.
Rogue, To Love Again and Honour Thyself are amongst the 70 books she has written.