11 High Profile Embezzlement Cases

The amounts of money that can be accrued during an embezzlement scam that lasts years or decades can be staggering. When hearing the dollar amounts of some of these crimes, it is amazing to imagine that these plans were not detected sooner. These cases involve different sized companies and different values of crime, but provide an opportunity to see what violations people are willing to attempt.

The following examples of high profile embezzlement cases from Massachusetts and other states include several details.

First is the name of the company that was victimized, and the estimated dollar amount of the crime committed against them. On the second line is the position of authority that the person that embezzled was holding at the time. The third line involves a brief description of the crime that was committed and what violations were done.

The embezzlements are listed in order from the crime that involved the most money down to the one that involved the least amount of money.

Enron, $11 billion
Founder, CEO, and Chairman
Corporate abuse and accounting fraud

Stanford Financial Group of Companies, $8 billion
Owner and CEO
Major fraud involved in Ponzi scheme, violated US securities laws

Clients of Bernie Madoff, Billions of dollars
Investment Advisor
Widespread frauds that squandered the investments of thousands of investors

Peregrine Financial, $200 million
Embezzled and reported false income statements

Fry’s Electronics, $65.6 million
Vice President of Merchandising and Operations
Used vendor fraud and kickbacks in purchasing electronics inventory for store, including a dummy store he set up

Tenens Corp., dba Essex Street Associates, $61 million
Chief Operating Officer
Transferred funds from the trusts of heirs of industrialist Frederick Ayers, whose accounts  he was managing, to his own personal accounts. Submitted false financial statements to not raise suspicions.

NYC Laborers Sandhogs Union Local 147, $42.6 million
Employee Benefits Manager
Embezzled through employee benefits plan, mostly money laundering

Koss Inc., $30 million
Vice President of Finance
Devised plan to commit wire fraud in order to keep up with compulsive shopping disorder

First Security Bank of Malta, $3.7 million
Vice President of Operations
Created fraudulent credit cards at bank to cover personal debts

Dane Cook, Millions of dollars
Business Manager and brother
Used position as brother and manager to steal through larceny, forgery, and embezzlement.

Woodruff Arts Center, $1.48 million
Accounts Receivable employee
Created company and assigned it a vendor number, and turned in invoices for it regularly

All of these criminals were charged for embezzlement and received, or are in the process of receiving, substantial sentences. In the case of some of the most severe offenders at the top of the list, they each received sentences in state prison for well over 100 year periods. That is how serious of a violation is it considered.

In addition to the prison sentences in Massachusetts or in other states, most of these people are also going to be forced to pay retribution, or pay back the money that they stole to the people they stole it from. This enables the court to freeze all monies that the criminal has now, or will have in the future, in order to see that as much of the required repayment to the victims is completed.

This listing should help to see that the crime of embezzlement is able to be committed in organizations of all sizes and styles. It can be done by high level executives, or in the last case, an accounts receivable employee.


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