Woman who defrauded Regina Sexual Assault Centre of $773K sentenced to 3 years

Debra Lynn House, the centre's former executive director, was also ordered to pay back the full amount.

Debra Lynn House also ordered to pay back full amount

Debra House, a former administrator with the Regina Sexual Assault Centre, has pleaded guilty to one count of fraud over $5,000 and has been sentenced to three years in prison for stealing $772,899 from the centre. (CBC Saskatchewan)

The Regina Sexual Assault Centre's former executive director has pleaded guilty to stealing nearly $800,000 from the organization.

Debra Lynn House, 63, was sentenced in Regina provincial courthouse Thursday to three years in prison.

She was also ordered to pay back the full amount — $772,899 — which had not been publicly disclosed until now.

"The Crown is satisfied with the sentence," said senior Crown prosecutor Derek Maher.

"People might think they're able to cover their tracks, or probably more like they think they're stepping in wet snow and eventually their tracks will melt. But the reality is they're really stepping in wet concrete."

Centre improves financial oversight

The assault centre released a statement immediately after House's conviction, stating that "although staff are relieved that this process is behind us ... it has been emotional for all."

"It was deeply distressing to learn that a trusted individual who we saw at work each day could be capable of such wrongdoing," the statement said.

The centre went on to say that House's actions damaged the 40-year-old organization's reputation.

It has also made "significant improvements to financial oversight to ensure that this cannot happen again." Those improvements include adding more members to the centre's board, such as additional community members with risk management and external auditing experience.