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YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — An 8th Army staff sergeant was found guilty Wednesday of lying about having a college degree, conspiring with her husband to get promoted early, and then stealing the extra money she earned from her inflated rank.

Nekeda Gundy, 23, was court-martialed for telling officials she had gotten an associates degree online from Florida A&M University to increase her promotion points, and having her husband, Staff Sgt. Andre Gundy, 26, change her military test scores in an electronic database. Prosecutors said the Gundys together illegally earned almost $4,500 by Aug. 2007 because of the early promotions, and Nekeda Gundy earned almost $2,000 of that amount.

Nekeda Gundy was to be sentenced Thursday. Her husband will be tried on similar charges in November. The couple, who have two children, have been under house arrest since April.

“They’re stealing from us. They’re stealing from the U.S. government,” said prosecutor Capt. Blake Williams during Wednesday’s trial.

Gundy pleaded not guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit larceny, two counts of providing false official statements and one count of larceny. After an hour and a half of deliberations, a six-member panel found Gundy guilty of all elements of the charges except two — faking three military awards, and lying to a CID investigator about when she took the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test.

Gundy was quiet after the verdict was read, but began sobbing outside the courtroom. Her attorney, Michael Waddington, said he believed Gundy would get a “fair” sentence.

Gundy’s conviction carries a maximum penalty of reduction in rank to E-1, plus 15 years in confinement, a dishonorable discharge, loss of pay and a fine. Prosecutors recommended she be fined $5,000.

During the trial, Sgt. 1st Class Kim Hyong-yong, a U.S. Army recruiter at Yongsan, said initial tests predicted Gundy would score in the mid-90s on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test. Electronic records show two later scores of 118, well over the 110 required for entrance into some competitive programs.

Prosecutors said it was unlikely that Gundy scored 118 on the test twice.

James Wesser, an education services specialist at the Yongsan Education Center, said it was odd that she took the test twice, because her first score was “exceedingly high.” Scores typically fluctuate each time a soldier takes the test, he testified, but Gundy’s overall score and most of the scores on the test’s subsections remained the same.

“The odds of having it are astronomical,” he said.

Waddington said the scores could have been incorrectly updated by someone else, and called the CID investigation “sloppy.”

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