LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Most people want to get rid of their old phone books, but a Las Cruces woman has been indicted for fraud for allegedly keeping more than 100,000 directories.
Fifty-five-year-old Debra Gottrell is accused of storing the books in three Las Cruces storage units during a four-year period instead of delivering them as she was hired to do.
Court records show she was indicted July 31st by a Dona Ana County grand jury on a charge of fraud.
A telephone listing for Gottrell was unavailable. There is no explanation of why she allegedly took the phone books.
The stash of directories was discovered when a worker at one of the storage units contacted Gottrell’s employer, Directory Plus.
Directory Plus owner Hugh Riddle says his company lost an estimated $500,000 from the lost directories.