Coast Guard petty officer in Texas guilty of theft

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Associated Press

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 8:32 AM

HOUSTON (AP) — A Coast Guard petty officer in the Houston area accused of going on a $230,000 personal spending spree with a government credit card has pleaded guilty to theft.

Petty Officer 1st Class Gavino Ortiz III of League City pleaded guilty Thursday to theft of government property. Investigators in Houston say Ortiz in November 2010 spent about $2,700 for a parachute and other personal skydiving equipment.

Prosecutors say documents show Ortiz used the government credit card to buy more than $230,000 in personal items between July 2010 and August 2011.

A federal judge has allowed Ortiz to remain free on bond pending sentencing in March. He faces up to 10 years in prison.

Coast Guard officials did not immediately comment on the service status of Ortiz.

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