Friday, April 22, 2011

Those Who Couldn't Wait To Win the Lotto - Part 6

The sad saga continues in this blog's multi-part series of multitudes of your average longstanding employees or executives embezzling moneyThese stories originated from Marquet International's Fraud Talk Blog.  According to Marquet's First Quarter report for 2011, California, Michigan and Pennsylvania top states for major embezzlement cases. 

California Woman Charged with Embezzling $180K From Doctor's Office

Stephanie Morgan of Oceanside, California and believed to be in her early 40s, has been charged with embezzling more than $180,000 from the medical offices of Dr. Julia Aspiras, where she had been employed as office manager. Over as much as a 3 year period, beginning in 2008 when she was hired, Morgan allegedly wrote unauthorized checks and used the practice credit card for her own benefit. She may also have stolen cash receipts, according to Dr. Aspiras. Morgan is the wife of US Marine Gunnery Sergeant Mitchell Morgan based at Camp Pendleton. Sgt. Morgan has been charged with receiving stolen goods. Police investigators reportedly found a number of apparent recent purchases at the Morgan home, including four flatscreen TVs, two dirt bikes, a laptop, a Ford Mustang, a Chevrolet Tahoe and new appliances. Stephanie Morgan reportedly has a prior criminal record in Texas.  Read the story here.

Ohio Businessman Pleads Guilty to Embezzling $120 From Employee Paychecks Meant for 401(K) Plans

Cliff A. Gallatin, 56, of Dublin, Ohio, has pleaded guilty to one felony count admitting he embezzled some $120,000 from employee paychecks - funds that were meant to be deposited into their respective 401(K) retirement plans - at American Systems Consulting, Inc., the company he owns and manages. Prosecutors alleged that Gallatin skimmed from the company retirement plan since it was established in 2003. A civil action was brought against the company, Gallatin and his wife, Loree O. Gallatin, 55, in January 2008 by the US Department of Labor in which he was ordered to pay restitution to his victim-employees. In the criminal case, Gallatin faces up to 5 years in prison, plus fines.  Read the story here.  Read the DOL's announcements here and here.

Former Drake University Employee in Iowa Charged With Embezzling More Than $470K
Robert Alex Harlan, 49, has been charged with with five counts of first-degree theft in connection with the embezzlement of more than $470,000 from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, where he had been employed as director of student accounts for the past 20 years. According to authorities, Harlan's allegedly misappropriations date back to 2004 and continued until this past March. According to a statement from the university, "University accounting records had been manipulated to allow institutional funds to be converted to an employee's personal use."

Developing... Read the story here, here and here.

Update (4/20/11): Two audits last year initially missed the embezzlement at Drake University. Read the story here.

Update (4/21/11): Loss put at $600K. Read the story here.
California Woman Charged With Embezzling $178K From Bank
Rebecca Parra Cerna, 52, has been charged with embezzling $178,000 in cash from the Compass Bank branch she managed in Stockton. According to authorities, Cerna's thefts date back to 2008 when she also began to create bogus loans in an attempt to cover them up. Cerna reportedly spent the stolen monies, in part, on gambling.

Read the story here
Former Missouri Banker Indicted For Allegedly Embezzling $4.4 Million
Mary Susan Becker, 56, of Jerseyville, Missouri, has been indicted on charges she embezzled $4.4 million from the Jersey State Bank where she had been employed since 1976. Becker began her career at the bank as an assistant cashier and ended up as executive vice president before she left the bank earlier this year. According to the indictment, Becker took money from a certificate of deposit for her personal benefit, was fraudulently reimbursed for expenses that had been inflated and electronically transferred monies from the bank's accounts to her own. Becker's scheme spanned at least 8 years dating back to 2003 or earlier and continuing through January 2011. Prosecutors are also seeking to seize certain of Becker's assets, including her home, two condominium units in Osage Beach, a 38-foot Donzi power boat, and various vehicles, retirement accounts and investments.  Read the story here and here.  

North Carolina Man Indicted on Chages He Allegedly Stole More Than $400K from Bank ATMs He Serviced
John Michael Feltovic, 43, of Fayetteville, North Carolina has been indicted on charges he embezzled more than $400,000 from four area banks whose ATMs he serviced through his employer, Colorado-based Pendum, LLC. According to prosecutors, Feltovic pocketed some $300,000 in cash at 17 area ATMs for BB&T, First Citizens and two subsidiaries of U.S. Bank, which he was entrusted to service and restock. He is also charged with stealing $104,000 from one of the bank's vaults. Feltovic's schemes reportedly began in December 2010 and continued until this February. Read the story here.
Nebraska Woman Gets Probation After Embezzling $136K  
Ariel Rivera, 28, of Lincoln, Nebraska has been sentenced to five years probation for embezzling $136,000 from Christensen Audiology & Hearing Aid Center where she had been employed as office manager and chief financial officer. Rivera is reportedly the daughter of Roy Christensen, the owner of the business. Rivera, who pleaded guilty to the charge of theft by deception, apparently wrote and forged unauthorized checks to herself from company accounts. Rivera was arrested last May. Her scheme spanned a two year period, from March 2008 to March 2010. Rivera has also been sued in civil court by the company to recover the monies she stole, which came to a grand total of totaled $136,797.67, which she has been ordered to repay. Read the story here, here and here.
For more stories, visit Fraud Talk Blog