DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa trash collection official has been sentenced to nearly five years in federal prison and ordered to pay restitution of more than $1.6 million.

Jeffrey Dworek, 56, of Urbandale, was sentenced Friday to 57 months in prison after pleading guilty last August to one count of federal mail fraud, federal prosecutors in Des Moines said.

Dworek had been the director of operations for Metro Waste Authority, which is run by Polk County and the cities that pay fees for its services. Dworek was arrested in 2019 and indicted on 10 mail fraud counts. Prosecutors say he set up a shell company purported to provide services to Metro Waste Authority, then paid out company funds for his own use between 2012 and 2017. Dworek resigned in March 2017; he’d worked at the agency since 1996.

Prosecutors say he also took kickbacks from various vendors.

Dworek's indictment came a day after Iowa State Auditor Rob Sand announced his office had uncovered misuse of at least $1.8 million following reports from the organization’s executive director of unusual financial transactions.

On Friday, Sand issued a written statement thanking the work of his staff and the FBI on the case.

“The Office of Auditor is a watchdog of taxpayer dollars and will hold accountable those who misuse and abuse taxpayer money and public trust,” Sand said.

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