Latest "Financial Fraud" Posts

Jennifer Elizabeth Meehan Sentenced to Prison

“I became caught up in my own fantasy.”  That is true it was a fantasy and today Jennifer Elizabeth Meehan was sentenced today  to six months in prison and fined $50,000.  In addition, U.S. District Court Judge Madeline Haikala also sentenced Jennifer jennifer-elizabeth-meehanElizabeth Meehan, 40, to serve 18 months of home confinement, 40 months supervised probation. She also is to serve eight hours a week community service while on home confinement and probation.

An earlier article outlined her crime.

From an unpaid volunteer position, Meehan has now through her own doing lost her license to practice law for a set of dumb stupid choices.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in embezzlement, Financial Fraud, fraud, legal and tagged , , , , , ,

Credit Union Ethics: It’s Fraud! What Were They Thinking

Having breakfast with my boss this morning, he shared that his wife woke him with a call that seemed rather urgent.  Seems one of their friends, who banked at the same institution they banked at, called to say that their account had a ZERO balance this morning.  She asked my boss (her husband) to check their balance to see if things were alright.  He did so immediately and all was Credit Union Ethicswell.  But apparently not so with their friend.  They were hacked and cleaned out over night.  Not something you’d like to wake up to.  It was apparent that fraud had taken place.  Which raises the question about credit union ethics – ethical practices and how safe our accounts really are.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Financial Fraud, fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , , , , ,

Credit Unions – 4 Keys to Responding to Internal Fraud

Most financial institutions are diligent about preventing internal fraud, but according to data from the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, in 2016 there were over 119,000 forms of reported fraud in the US thru June 2016.  While most of them are not internally generated, according to the NCUA (National Credit Union Association) reports, the number of suspicious incidents involving employees is on the rise.  A critical issue for Credit Unions and (for that matter) any financial institution is the importance of responding to internal fraud.

Responding to Internal FraudWhile my primary focus is ethics, the reality of the lack of ethical behavior often leads to illegal behavior and that is fraud pure and simple.  So let’s look at 4 keys to responding to internal fraud:

What’s Your Fraud Policy?

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Financial Fraud, fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , , , ,

Credit Union Fraud: Former Credit Union CEO Charged with Fraud

Credit Union fraud is never good.  The board of directors of the $42 million Toledo Metro Federal Credit Union told their former president/CEO Charles Robert Poore they wanted to ask him about numerous suspicious transactions on his corporate credit card.

Credit Union FraudThe next day, Poore resigned and was never seen again at the Toledo, Ohio-based cooperative.

Federal agents, however, found Poore in Pittsburgh and arrested him Tuesday on a felony charge of thrift and credit union theft, embezzlement or misapplication. After a hearing in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh, Poore was released on a $25,000 bond.

A TMFCU internal investigation revealed from December 2011 through May 2014, the credit union paid a total of $269,593 to Visa for transactions Poore made on his corporate credit card. Most of those transactions primarily paid for office equipment and supplies, according to a federal affidavit filed in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in business ethics, ethics, Financial Fraud, fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , , ,

Michael Oppenheim: A Case of Embezzlement, Gambling and Bad Ethics

What happens when greed, opportunity and a gambling addiction form the perfect unethical storm? You get men such as Michael Oppenheim, a former JPMorgan Chase & Co investment adviser who stole more than $20 million from wealthy clients to fuel his gambling addiction. His unethical behavior will cost him five years in jail.

Michael OppenheimThe mechanism of Michael Oppenheim’s behavior was neither unique nor creative. He had about 500 clients listening to his advice; people who trusted him. For about seven years, he persuaded some of his clients (actually ‘marks’), to allow him to withdraw their money because he was going to invest it in low-risk municipal bonds. He had no such intention. He took most of the money and bet “whatever,” and then whatever was left over, he put down on high-risk options.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Financial Fraud, fraud, prison and tagged , , ,

Frank Enrique Lleras – When Greed Meets Bad Ethics in Charlotte

Greed is often a necessary component to ethics scandals that involve fraud. In case after case, those people whose common sense is overruled by big promises and a lack of due diligence, are vulnerable to any number of schemes, scams and fraudulent practices.

Ponzi scheme We don’t have to go back to Bernie Madoff to find a good illustration of unethical investment practices. Just the other day, Frank Enrique Lleras, who is only 30 years of age (and now facing up to 40 years in prison) was found guilty of securities fraud and wire fraud in a federal court in Charlotte, NC.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Financial Fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , ,

Accounting Fraud: Do You Know What Your Internal Accounting Staff is Doing?

Accounting fraud is dangerous and something that Amy Hilty, 38, formerly of Stanley, N.C. and now residing in  Dalton, Ohio, pleaded guilty to stealing nearly $400,000 from her former employer.  Hilty pleaded to one count of wire fraud and one count of tax evasion.

Accounting FraudThe background:

From 2008 to 2012, Hilty was employed as accounting manager for a company located in Huntersville, N.C.  As the company’s accounting manager, Hilty’s responsibilities included preparing the company’s financial statements, maintaining QuickBooks, preparing payroll and making bank deposits.  According to court records, Hitly used her access to the company’s accounting system to divert company funds to bank accounts she controlled.  This is accounting fraud at its most basic.

The Cover Up:

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Financial Fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple, IRS Tax Issues, Tax Fraud and tagged , , , ,

Michael Wombolt: When Accountants stray from Ethics

In an article by Matt Hudson from the Billings Gazette we find a “popular Billings accountant” facing federal embezzlement charges which has to cause the business community to ask “Why?”!  To be clear, I do not know Michael Wombolt, but I do know a thing to two about how such a downfall can take place.  I’ve been in his shoes and it’s no pretty.

Michael WomboltHudson’s news report states the following:

Michael Leonard Wombolt was indicted in December on eight counts of wire fraud through his dealings with Harvey Ost Oilfield Services, a Malta company. He’s accused of moving money from the client to his own business accounts and trying to cover the tracks.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Business and Personal Ethics, Financial Fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , , , , , ,

Banking Ethics: Two Bankers Seize Opportunity to Steal from Their Clients

Does a profession automatically insulate a person from committing an unethical act? Unfortunately, it does not over the course of time, we have witnessed the clergy, medical doctors, lawyers and stockbrokers all committing fraud even though they take oaths Banking Ethics: JPMorgan Chaseof all different varieties.  When it comes to banking ethics far too often folks have come to expect the worst.

Another profession that we have imagined to be above poor ethics is banking. We have been raised to think of the staid banker in his or her smart suit, passing impassive, analytical, numbers-based judgments, as being above scrutiny. They are seen as being honest to a fault and always having our best interests in mind. This is especially true of private bankers who handle the interests of the extremely wealthy. As it turns out, “not so fast.” Unethical behavior, it appears, has well-established itself in the banking industry.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Banks, business ethics, Ethical Behavior, Financial Fraud, fraud and tagged , , , , , ,

Many Faces of Fraud – Benita Dinkins-Robinson sentenced to Prison!

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in ethics, Financial Fraud, Fraud Pure and Simple, prison and tagged , , , , , ,