updated 3/25/2009 3:47:39 PM ET 2009-03-25T19:47:39

A former north Alabama police officer accused of faking his abduction and fleeing to Las Vegas with some $60,000 stolen from his department has pleaded guilty to a federal theft charge.

An accomplice also pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to helping former Decatur police Sgt. Faron White stage his disappearance.

White faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. He also may be ordered to repay $60,000 to the Decatur Police Department.

His accomplice, former police volunteer Sarah Richardson, faces up to five years in prison and a $125,000 fine.

Both are set to be sentenced July 14.

Authorities have said White was gambling with the stolen cash, trying to win enough to pay off debts.

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