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Federal appeals court orders re-sentencing of former Wal-Mart exec

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit Tuesday ordered [order, PDF] former Wal-Mart [corporate website; JURIST news archive] vice chairman Tom Coughlin to face a new sentencing hearing, holding that his sentence was too lenient and improperly departed from the punishment prescribed by the Federal Sentencing Guidelines [USSC materials]. Coughlin was sentenced to five years probation [JURIST report], including 27 months of house arrest, in August 2006 after pleading guilty to six felony fraud and tax charges [JURIST report] in January 2006 for stealing money, merchandise and gift cards from the store and filing a false tax report. Coughlin was also ordered to pay a $50,000 fine and more than $400,000 in restitution.

Wal-Mart lawyers referred Coughlin to federal prosecutors [JURIST report] after they uncovered $500,000 in losses due to store vouchers that Coughlin used to purchase items and funds he embezzled to pay for the care of his hunting dogs, an upgrade to his truck, and the lease for a private hunting area. AP has more.

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