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Former Framingham State alumni official charged with theft

A former employee of Framingham State University was arrested Tuesday for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from the school, most of which he used to buy illegal drugs, prosecutors said.

A routine review of university spending statements last year revealed that Robert Walmsley, 34, who worked in the university’s Office of Development and Alumni Relations, had allegedly misused a university-issued procurement card to incur more than $100,000 worth of illegitimate charges, according to a statement from the attorney general’s office.

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Walmsley worked as the school’s assistant director of alumni relations for about five years until his termination in June 2013.

Walmsley falsely claimed he was making authorized purchases with the procurement card on his monthly expense reports to the university, according to Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office. An investigation by her office later revealed that Walmsley allegedly used the card to purchase hundreds of Visa gift cards that he apparently exchanged for cash and illegal drugs, according to the attorney general. Coakley’s office said it traced the gift cards back to individuals who allegedly sold cocaine to the defendant several times a week.

State Police arrested Walmsley in Brockton on Tuesday , according to Coakley’s office.

Walmsley was arraigned Tuesday afternoon in Framingham District Court on three counts of larceny over $250 and two counts of presenting a fraudulent claims to employer for payment, according to Coakley’s office. Walmsley pleaded not guilty.

According to Coakley’s office, bail was set at $20,000 cash, and Walmsley is due back in Framingham District Court on Sept. 4.

Trisha Thadani can be reached at trisha.thadani@globe.com.
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