TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A former employee of New Jersey’s family services agency has been sentenced to 41 months in prison for filing false tax returns and cashing forged refund checks in the names of clients served by the agency.

Federal authorities say 30-year-old Ugochukwu Madubuike of Orange and an accomplice received tax refund checks totaling more than $800,000. Madubuike pleaded guilty in April.

At sentencing Monday in federal court in Trenton, he was ordered to pay restitution of nearly $620,000.

Prosecutors say Madubuike used his position as a family services specialist with the state Division of Youth and Family Services to obtain personal information on clients and used it to submit bogus federal income tax returns.

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