Updated: Monday, 10 May 2010, 7:25 PM MDT
Published : Monday, 10 May 2010, 6:09 PM MDT
SANTA FE (KRQE) - The criminal case against the former business manager of the Jemez Mountain School District may be closed since her apparent suicide, but the civil lawsuit against her and others will continue, according to the executive director of the New Mexico Public School Insurance Authority.
On Saturday New Mexico State Police investigators said relatives found Kathy Borrego's body at her Rio Arriba County home.
Investigators said she'd committed suicide two days before being sentenced for embezzling more than $3.4 million from the Jemez Mountain district. She faced 41 years behind bars.
"The case ends with the death of Ms. Borrego," District Attorney Angela Pacheco said of the criminal case prosecuted by her office. "She would've been out in 20 years. That's when she would've been eligible for parole."
The civil lawsuit filed against Borrego in January by the insurance authority and the Jemez Mountain district will continue, however, authority director Sammy Quintana said.
The NMPSIA insures all public schools in the state except for the Albuquerque Public Schools.
"Very tragic what happened, but we'll continue with the lawsuit," Quintana said. "The embezzlement alleges $3.4 million, and we're going to see how much of that we can help the school district recover."
He said unlike the criminal case the civil lawsuit doesn't just name Borrego, but her partner, daughter and dozens of others they believe were involved in the embezzlement scheme or benefited from it.
Many people, Quintana said, they're still trying to identify.
Investigators believe Borrego spent some of the money gambling. Quintana said they plan to go name Borrego's estate as a defendant so they can go after her assets and try to trace where the money went that she had embezzled.
Pacheco said the community that once scorned Borrego for her crimes didn't expect this ending.
"What she did is she impacted an entire community, and many children were harmed," Pacheco said. "As a result of that she needed to be behind bars.
"Her death is definitely something that has been very sad and very tragic and, you know, I think at this point we just need to give the family time to grieve."