A look at the best of the worst accountant malfeasance around the globe over the past week or so. British accountant, 47, faces the death penalty in the Philippines ‘after being caught with meth in a drugs raid’ [Daily Mail] Philip Joseph was in a flat with two locals when police burst through the door […]
It was a bad week for accountants from the U.K. with the first name of Andrew. AFC Fylde accountant blew £240,000 on sex, drink and drugs [BBC News] A semi-professional socc … I mean, football team in England nearly went belly-up because its finance director, Andrew Barnbrook, stole thousands of pounds from the team to […]
The Minnesota Star Tribune has an update on Ben Hendrickson, the former Milwaukee Brewers pitcher whose post-baseball accounting career took a dubious turn while employed by Floors Northwest in Fridley, MN. A Twin Cities man who briefly pitched in the Twins organization and had two short stints as a Major Leaguer has pleaded guilty after […]
A look at the best of the worst accountant malfeasance around the globe over the past month or so. CA throttles wife to death, tries to pass it off as suicide, arrested [Times of India] Here is a disturbing story out of India: Jaiveer Singh, a 52-year-old chartered accountant, was arrested on May 1 for allegedly […]
Y’all ready to meet a real bad ass? You sure? I’m not sure you can take this. Darren Carvill, 38, is headed to jail after a “weekend of madness” which included hookers and blow funded by approximately £170,000 ($220,000 USD) he stole from his employer, a car servicing company. The Sun reports: A source revealed: […]
Scott Larsen appeared in a Skokie, Ill. courtroom on March 11, where the Wisconsin accountant pleaded not guilty to felony reckless homicide charges in the January death of Illinois State Trooper Christopher Lambert. According to a Chicago Tribune report, Larsen, 61, also pleaded not guilty to violating Scott’s Law, which increases potential penalties for motorists […]
You know it’s tax season when an accountant who was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for identity theft is just too busy to go to jail right now. Such is the case for Randy Usow of Mequon, Wis., who agreed to plead guilty to one count of theft of government property and one […]
Wisconsin accountant Scott Larsen appeared in a courtroom in Skokie, Ill. on Jan. 29, where a judge set his bond at $250,000 on charges of felony reckless homicide and prohibited him from driving if he posted bond. This is a good thing for everyone because Larsen fatally struck an Illinois State Police trooper with his […]
If you live in the Chicago area like I do, you’ve by now heard or read about the death of Illinois State Trooper Christopher Lambert, who was struck by a vehicle on an Illinois tollway on Jan. 12 after he got out of his patrol car to assist drivers involved in an accident. Well, we […]
Not to show my ignint ‘Murican here but I have to admit I don’t know dick about X Factor. I think those one dudes were on there, you know, the ones who looked like skinny, middle-aged lesbians led by a bootleg Mick Jagger. To be fair, I can’t name an American Idol contestant since the […]
Whew, you guys, this one is … awkward. Scott Vetere is a 39-year-old father of three from Michigan who serves as assistant coach for the University of Michigan women’s gymnastics team, or at least he did until he resigned Oct. 15. His resignation came after Vetere was caught getting it on with an 18-year-old female […]
Through the years, Going Concern has chronicled accountants and finance chiefs getting caught doing really shitty things. But if this accountant is found guilty of the charges levied against her, this has to rank among the shittiest of the shitty. From the Los Angeles Daily News: A certified public accountant charged with embezzling more than […]
Laundering your blue Oxford dress shirts, blouses, gray trousers, and fleece vests, good. Laundering money, bad. From the Times of San Diego: A San Diego-based certified public accountant was sentenced Tuesday to 21 months in federal prison for his role in an international drug trafficking, gambling and money laundering organization led by former University of […]
In dubious accountant news, Randy Usow of Mequon, Wis., has agreed to plead guilty to one count of theft of government property and one count of identity theft after stealing more than $800,000 by submitting fraudulent tax returns in the name of NBA player Zaza Pachulia and his wife, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. Pachulia, […]
We can’t say we’re shocked by this turn of events. From Bloomberg: Paul Manafort’s former accountant was fired from a Virginia firm after she told the court she was aware that Manafort’s tax returns contained false information. Cindy Laporta testified Friday [Aug. 3] in the government’s case against the former Trump campaign chairman, saying she […]
G.O.P. Rushed to Pass Tax Overhaul. Now It May Need to Be Altered. [NYT] There are a number of quirks in the new tax law “that disadvantage certain farmers, hurt restaurateurs and retailers and could balloon the tax bills of large multinational corporations,” and that has business owners and executives worked up. Meanwhile, many fixes […]
AICPA CEO Melancon sheds light on tax reform lobbying [AT] If you were worried that AICPA President, CEO, and curling enthusiast Barry Melancon didn’t carry water for large accounting firms during the tax reform debate, rest easy: The AICPA was unable to dissuade lawmakers from excluding large accounting firms from the 20 percent pass-through deduction […]
New Hedge-Fund Tax Dodge Triggers Wild Rush Back Into Delaware [Bloomberg] In the new tax bill, Congress thought it could stick it to private equity and hedge fund managers by requiring them to hold investments for three years in order to have their carried interest income taxed at the capital gains rate. Private equity funds […]
Twilight Of The Law Firms: The Big 4 Are Poised To Conquer The Legal Landscape [ATL] One thing we discuss around here with increasing regularity is Big 4 firms elbowing their way into the legal world unencumbered. Joe Patrice writes a good overview at Above the Law, noting that at a recent legal conference, “the […]
Accounting firm adds 6 new rules to prevent Oscars envelope gaffe [AP] The Academy Award nominations were announced this morning, but PwC’s Tim Ryan had a little reveal of his own, sharing the new rules the firm put in place to avoid a SALY #EnvelopeGate. Naturally, the new rules center around “envelope rituals” that should […]
One Accounting Firm Wants to Hire Retirees [WSJ] PKF O’Connor Davies has 24 employees who hit mandatory retirement age at other accounting firms, including one, in his 70s, who helped jumpstart their international tax practice. Mandatory retirement age policies at accounting firms, most notably PwC, have gotten the attention of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, […]
Ed. note: ANR will be off on Monday to observe Martin Luther King Jr. Day. South Africa’s Audit Regulator Says Part of KPMG Probe Nearing Completion [Reuters] South Africa’s Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA) announced that one part of the investigation into KPMG’s work for the Gupta family is “nearing completion” and the rest […]
FDIC win against PwC could finally force auditors to look for fraud [MarketWatch] Francine McKenna reports that representatives from PwC have given contradictory testimony in separate civil trials in the past year about the firm’s responsibility to design its audits to detect fraud. In the Colonial case where Judge Barbara Jacobs Rothstein ruled that PwC […]
Here’s a story from November (yeah, I know, but it’s January 3rd) about a “68-year-old Manhattan accountant” who “lured his 23-year-old clerk to his home office by saying he wanted to teach her about income-tax returns — then claimed God wanted her to be his sexual plaything.” I don’t have to tell any of you […]
What New Tax Law? Caterpillar Fights to Protect Its Swiss-Made Profits [WSJ] An exhaustive look at Caterpillar’s battle with the IRS, including a nod to PwC for Best Accounting Firm With Conflicts of Interest in a Supporting Role. Former Treasury Secretary Lew Says Tax Cuts Will Leave the U.S. Broke [Bloomberg] Jack sees where this […]
House, Senate Republicans Reach Deal on Final Tax Bill [WSJ] The text of the bill is still being written, but in short: the top individual rate landed at 37 percent; the corporate tops out at 21 percent; pass-throughs get a 20 percent income deduction. A compromise over the SALT deduction is in the works; rather […]
Tax Plans May Give Your Co-Worker a Better Deal Than You [NYT] The tax bill puts wage earners, currently about 80 percent of the working population, at a big disadvantage. “So a decorator, an artist or a plumber would have a higher tax rate than an owner of a decorating business, an art shop or […]
Yes, it’s only Wednesday, but look at the bright side; the end might be closer than we think. ‘I’ve got to run. My big client is on the other phone!’ [AT] Withum partner Ed Mendlowitz shares an anecdote about meeting an accountant who he overheard blowing off a client “because his humongous client needed something […]
Ed. note: We’re off starting tomorrow, returning Monday. Send tips over the holiday to email@example.com and submit your questions, missives, and tryptophan-induced dream journals to Open Items. Happy Thanksgiving! Mergers Yesterday, the Department of Justice sued to block the AT&T-Time Warner merger. Justice believes the combined company would “greatly harm American consumers” while AT&T says […]
Accountants behaving badly Here’s an interesting diversion in the ABB section from the usual “Accountant Embezzles Funds” story: insurance fraud! An Atlanta-area CPA, Earle Turner Sr., allegedly took out 19 life insurance policies on his clients, naming himself as the beneficiary: Mutual of Omaha notified Georgia officials of suspected fraudulent activity by Turner after finding […]
Editor’s note: Accounting News Roundup will be off on Monday, returning Tuesday. Have a great weekend. Employee retention “How to lose staff and alienate employees” is this Accounting Today article based on a speech given by Sandra Wiley and it is nearly perfect. Secretive, cultureless firms with only up-or-out career paths are doomed, and rightly […]
“Small business” Politicians love to trumpet their support for small business. And it’s no wonder, small businesses are all around us, so groveling to them makes for an easy ploy. The Republican tax plan includes a 25-percent rate for pass-through entities, which many people equate with “small business.” Unfortunately, the vast majority of small businesses […]
Audit committees A recent study has found that a 1999 SEC rule requiring companies to disclose certain information about their audit committees hasn’t lived up to expectations: Before adoption of the regulation, there was no mandate on audit-committee size; independence was required of only a committee majority; and no definition of independence was provided, giving […]
Accountants behaving badly A reader pointed us to this seemingly common ABB story featuring Krystle Sheals of Marion, Ark.: Sheals, a former bookkeeper with Nichols Fire and Security (NFS) in Memphis, Tennessee, is charged with using her access to her employer’s bank accounts to pay personal bills and expenses, including personal credit card payments, personal […]
Hacks Joe Kristan pointed us to this disturbing story in Tax Notes (sub req’d) featuring IRS Commissioner John Koskinen: “Our estimate has been that before that breach, information on over 100 million Americans was already in the hands of criminals,” Koskinen told reporters during a press conference on the IRS security summit preparations for the […]
New bosses KPMG, BDO, and Crowe Horwath have all announced new global chairmen/CEOs recently. This will have almost no effect on your day-to-day professional lives beside the fact that you will be ignoring emails from a slightly different smiley white dude. SALT This Bloomberg BNA post points out that if your city’s newly constructed professional […]
Estate taxes Perhaps this will sound like a repeat of yesterday, but the Trump Administration’s tax reform plan is more of an illogical tax policy term paper. USC Professor Edward Kleinbard called it a “deficit-busting mess.” PolitifFact said Trump’s claims about ending the estate tax are a “Pants on Fire” level falsehood. This particular proposal […]
Accountants are worried about technology, change, et al. If you haven’t immersed yourself in the collective anxiety of the accounting profession lately, I highly recommend this Accounting Today column. There are a plethora of quotes to choose from, but Grant Thornton CEO Mike McGuire has a good one: “Our industry is being disrupted by accelerating […]
Critical audit matters A BDO survey of corporate board directors found that 48% of them “do not feel the discussion of CAMs is an improvement to the transparency and usefulness of the auditor’s report for investors.” This shouldn’t be surprising since 1) A lot of board members don’t care much about auditing and 2) Even […]
If you’re an accountant and you plan to steal from a client or your employer or whomever, one thing is certain: You are confident. Why else would you try to embezzle money unless you were sure you wouldn’t get caught? As noted criminal Sam Antar has said, “It’s a calculated risk. Everybody takes precaution against […]
Culture copycats At Accounting Today, Dan Hood writes about “Three things that aren’t your firm’s culture,” and those are 1) “We treat our staff like family,” 2) “We work hard and we play hard,” and 3) “We value work-life balance.” I don’t have hard data to back this up, but I’d venture to say that […]
For those of you hoping to retire one day, do you know how you’ll stay busy once you’re not working? Golf? Traveling? Yes, those sound nice and leisurely. Gardening is another nice hobby, however, be sure you stay current on the marijuana laws in your area, should you decide that’s the kind of greenhouse you […]
In Compliance Week, Tammy Whitehouse reports on a revised “Statement of Ethical Professional Practice” from the Institute of Management Accountants. Why was a revision necessary? To keep up with technology, maybe? Perhaps to establish some rules for all the robots? Nope! They had to revise it because a fair number of you are a bunch […]
Ed. note: GC will be off on Monday for Presidents Day. See you back here on Tuesday. MF Global vs. PwC We touched on this story last week, but if you can’t get enough of the pre-game analysis of the pending trial between the bankruptcy trustee of MF Global and PwC, then you’ll enjoy this […]
Tax reform is hard Here’s Richard Rubin of the Wall Street Journal reporting on how Republicans are learning that reforming the tax code is difficult: A linchpin of the House Republicans’ tax plan, an approach called “border adjustment,” has split Republicans and fractured the business world into competing coalitions before a bill has even been […]
Here's a weird one: A New Jersey man has been charged with threatening now-former President Obama's life on Facebook. A report in the Philadelphia Inquirer has the details: Federal prosecutors say William Peterman Jr., 33, of Medford Lakes and Beaufort, S.C., posted two death threats on his Facebook page last week, including one addressed to […]
Mandatory arbitration Alison Frankel of Reuters reports that the question of whether mandatory arbitration clauses in employment contracts may be soon before the Supreme Court. How big is the issue of whether employers can bar workers from acting as a group to enforce their rights? So big that on Thursday, the accounting firm Ernst & […]
Deloitte's revenue Each year, accounting firms release revenue results and each year I am reminded that it's not really about transparency, rather, it is about marketing. The most meaningful number in Deloitte's press release is the $36.8 billion in global revenue. From there, it's a long list of factoids that the firm wants to tell […]
Non-CPA managing partners Does the managing partner of an accounting firms need to be a CPA? If we assume that a managing partner’s duties include setting the overall vision and running the day-to-day operations of the firm, I think the answer is, “No.” If we also assume that a managing partner is the best business […]
There's probably nothing more agonizing in the world of sports than being a Chicago Cubs fan. Despite more than a century of disappointment, abuse and losing in every way imaginable, Cub fans remain loyal. I mean, what else are they gonna do? Right around the turn of the next century when they finally win another […]
My grandma got wrapped up in an illegal money-making scheme once. She started taping movies off TV, editing out the commercials, hand-labeling the VHS tapes, and selling them for $3 out of a cardboard box on her driveway. When I caught her, I quickly shut her new business venture down. Luckily, it's 2016 and none […]
It's a tale as old as time: some accountants are perverts. Back in 2011, Jr Deputy Accountant wrote about SEC accountants browsing through porn at work. A few weeks ago, Caleb brought you the story of the accounting trainee who sent abusive texts and photos depicting disturbing sex scenes. Etc. Etc. Etc. Today I decided […]
Maybe it's because I read a lot of "accountant embezzled funds" articles, but I'm increasingly disappointed in the spending habits of hapless accountants who help themselves to their employers money. The scheme hatched by your average embezzling accountant isn't often well thought out, so I'd expect them to make equally reckless purchases. Sadly, more often […]
California CPA Donald Gridiron was sentenced to 57 months in prison for stealing more than $4 million from a New Jersey church and another nonprofit where he served as treasurer. Gridiron was also ordered to pay $5.1 in restitution. Apparently this all happened when some friendly bets on the golf course spiraled into something slightly […]
Brad Harris, the founder and owner of Novus Health Care Services in Frisco, Texas, has been accused of some pretty terrible things in a FBI affidavit for a search warrant obtained by a local affiliate. Specifically, Harris allegedly instructed nurses to give hospice patients overdoses of medications like morphine to hasten their deaths: Harris, an […]
Cell phones, you may have noticed, are everywhere. The homeless even have them! You may have also noticed that people use them everywhere, too: while driving, on line at the grocery store, IN THE BATHROOM. It’s insufferable. One place where phones have become increasingly common is on public transit and, to put it mildly, this is an outrage and abomination.
This month in white-collar crime: Will you use your accounting skills for good or for evil? A new money-making scheme for all of usFun fact: in 1925, a scrap-metal dealer bought the Eiffel Tower from an Austro-Hungarian con-man named The Count. Instead of selling international landmarks to unsuspecting scrap dealers –- which I've considered and […]
James Hammes, who spent 6 years on the lam walking the Appalachian Trail, pleaded guilty earlier today to wire fraud. The judge warned him that she could impose a maximum sentence of up to 20 years, although his plea deal should result in less time. Either way, it'll be more than enough time for him […]
If you were a CPA who testified in the trial of two NYPD officers dubbed the "Mafia Cops," no one would doubt you if you said, "I could never ever, I will never ever, be a CPA again." After he was busted for stealing more than $5 million from his clients, New York accountant Stephen […]
During his sentencing for a slew of crimes related to his role in a tax-evasion scheme, accountant William Frio, "lost his footing and hit his head on the defense table." The judge dropped a 5-year prison trip on Frio and ordered him to pay $1.7 million in restitution for his misstep. [Philly.com]
Jack Weichman, CPA has been indicted on 34 criminal charges ranging from bank fraud to money laundering to filing false tax returns, among others. His attorney, for one, is flabbergasted by this situation: In a statement issued Thursday morning, Weichman's attorney, Theodore Poulos, said "we are deeply disappointed and, quite frankly, appalled that the government […]
Boonlomp Soonthornchai handled trustee, executor and accounting services as a partner at Yount, Hyde and Barbour in Middleburg, Virginia. In 2004, he began depositing client funds into his personal accounts, concealing the "the source of the money in his personal ledger." He then admitted to the embezzlement, "[w]hen confronted by firm board members and […]
An accountant in Syracuse was sentenced to 16 weekends in jail and 5 years of probation for stealing $44k from her employer. Syracuse.com reports that Kathleen M. DeFillippo aka Kathleen M. Rogowski will report to Onondage County Jail on Friday at 6 pm and be released on Sunday at 6 pm to serve out the sentence. I […]
Well, this lady is definitely going to have to find some other way to barter for honey buns and baby oil, as she won't be providing important financial services to fellow inmates any time soon: The Superior Court of the State of California, County of San Diego, North County Division, has granted the California Board […]
A Sunset Hills accounting business closed abruptly last week just days before the tax deadline. Its owner was sentenced to five years in prison for stealing $19,869 from a client. Mary Beth Gable, 55, owner of MEG Accounting and Tax Services at 10345 Watson Rd., pleaded guilty to the theft charge in February. Gable, of the […]
Leslie Lebel used to work in the finance department for the City of Bloomington, Illinois. After seven years on the job, during the time between September and December 2011, she allegedly embezzled $21,000 or so. She was arrested last week this allegedly sticky fingering and prosecutors shared the details in court this week: Lebel accessed […]
Why does Colin always assign me these creeper stories? Oh well. I don't know about anyone else but reading this gave me the creeps. Maybe because we had two creepy neighbors trying to mack on me when I was a nubile young middle schooler, though the one who drove a Camaro was pretty cool to […]
Generally speaking, accountants are in demand. So much so, perhaps, that prospective employers might overlook small details when hiring one, such as that accountant still being on probation for stealing from a former employer. That's exactly (allegedly) what happened with 39-year-old Michelle Hice. You see, Michelle was fired from a third-party accounting firm in October […]
In these troubled times, it makes sense to pinch pennies whenever possible. I managed to find an oil change place to regularly give me half off on my $90+ synthetic oil only service just by being charming, personable and – presumably – a chick. Some of us clip coupons. Others haggle (you guys should be […]
There are plenty of professional mentors out there for young accountants to look up to. Men and women of intelligence, integrity, work ethic, nice shoes, all that good stuff. After taking a look at this SEC Administrative Release, you can easily conclude that group does NOT include R. Jeffrey Rooks and another anonymous "accounting partner": […]
Try as you might, this will top everything you've done to be a deplorable member of the accounting brethren: [A]n accountant in Singapore refused to be associated with her mother even after her death all because of the S$2,000 [about $1,600 USD] in funeral expenses. The accountant, in her 30s, did not show up after learning […]
UPDATE: The Fairfield Citizen post now reports that the charges against Mr. Rosenberg have been dropped. The Fairfield Citizen reports that Stuart Rosenberg, 63, got a surprise package back in May: According to police, a package was sent by overnight priority mail to Rosenberg's office from Oregon. However, Rosenberg was away and instructed an employee […]
Shaun Horan is no Rita Crundwell (allegedly!): A former Oak Brook accountant stole nearly $300,000 from his employer by writing checks to himself over a five-year span, prosecutors said Wednesday. Shaun Horan, 31, of the 1600 block of Blackwell Lane in Aurora, appeared in DuPage County bond court on a felony theft charge. Horan is accused of […]
Joseph Traxler was the CFO of Centennial Mortgage and Funding Inc. in Bloomington. He helped run an $8 million fraud by misleading banks that allowed Centennial to obtain more loans. He also hid defaults and double-funded mortgages from lenders, as well as little check kiting in order to keep the business afloat (rather than enrich […]
Omaha accountant, Clarence "Fred" Weber appears to have a problem. First off, he was sending sexts to a 14 year-old and 13 year-old girl, "request[ing] naked photos of the girls, […] pictures of the girls partially clothed, [and] others centered on sexual activities." This, obviously, is disturbing, illegal, and completely unacceptable but secondly good God, […]
As professional capital market servants, you regularly purchase goods and services for business reasons. Airfare. Bic pens. Strippers. They all, at one time or another, have been purchased in the name of commerce. Unfortunately, what constitutes as a "business expense" is subject to wide interpretation. For example, a large elaborate lunch with various co-workers is […]
Tamara Tunie – aka the medical examiner in Law & Order SVU – lost well over $1 million when her business manager and accountant Joseph Cilibrasi stole her money that she earned from a long acting career. Now, I know what you're thinking, "She's on TV, she's got plenty of money." Well, yes, she is […]
Provident Capital Indemnity Ltd’s former outside auditor admitted in federal court this week to participating in a $670 million fraud in the life settlement bond market, according to the Department of Justice.
56-year-old Jorge Castillo pleaded guilty Monday to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, U.S. Attorney Neil MacBride in Alexandria, Virginia, said in a call with reporters. He could face up to 20 years in prison.
Castillo admitted to conspiring with PCI president Minor Vargas Calvo to prepare false financial statements that reflected contracts PCI held with other reinsurance companies. Castillo admitted to prosecutors that he never audited PCI’s financial statements and that he was aware PCI did not actually enter into the contracts with other reinsurance companies listed on the company’s financials. PCI paid him about $84,000 from 2004 to 2010.
Castillo will be sentenced in a Richmond, VA federal court on May 22.
It would probably surprise no one that landscaping is hobby that many accountants are fond of. Or maybe it would. Whatever. The meticulousness of making sense of numbers seems to jive well with a finely manicured lawn, trees and bushes that adorn one’s property. Plus, the green thumb matches the eyeshade.
Anyway, putting all that time and energy into natural aesthetics could cause anyone to get a little possessive. If anyone so much as lays a finger on a single tree branch without permission, things could get ugly. To wit:
An accountant who allegedly left a former policeman bleeding and concussed in a brawl over hedge trimming before launching an expensive law suit has defended his response insisting: “It wasn’t just trimmed it was butchered”.
Now if that sounds like a bit of an overreaction, the accountant in question – Anthony Branson – claims that this incident was part of ‘extreme intimidation’ by his neighbors, the Marreros. Intimidation that was ultimately brought to a head:
The next day Mr Marrero, who had been away, sent family to attempt to finish off clipping the hedge, something Mr Branson said further antagonised the situation. He also claims he discovered the gates of the adjoining paddock, where he and his wife Corrinne keep around a dozen alpacas, left open, apparently deliberately.
Trimming a man’s bush without permission could be understandable. But dragging innocent, sometimes overly hairy, camelids into the situation? That just seems uncalled for.
Everybody admires a CPA who is willing to stand up to the IRS for a client. To a point.
A New York CPA went past that point, according to the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility. If the testimony of an IRS agent before an administrative law judge is to be believed, the CPA, George Diehl, is at least guilty of a social faux pas in a conversation with IRS Revenue Officer Miamouna Diakite when she refused to put a 45-day hold on collection of a client account.
From the ALJ opinion:
Diakite stated that Diehl refused to enter into an installment agreement. Diakite testified that he became irate and loud, saying that he had obtained holds on accounts routinely, and asked to speak to Diakite’s supervisor. Diakite told him that, pursuant to IRS procedure, her supervisor would call him within 24 hours. He insisted on talking to her supervisor immediately. Diakite then, also pursuant to protocol, told him that the account was then in “collection status” whereby the IRS “will” levy against Taxpayer 1’s bank account, garnish her salary and obtain liens on her real and personal property.
Diakite testified that Diehl became very upset and said “do you know what I do to people like you. I kill them.” Diakite replied “you don’t mean that, sir” and Diehl replied “I do. I do. I’ll kill you.” Diakite then sat at her desk repeating to herself aloud that Diehl said that he would kill her and he is in New York. She became frightened and then heard a male voice, not Diehl’s, saying “what are you doing?” and the phone was then disconnected.
The opinion never does say who the “male voice” belongs to. Somebody with better manners, perhaps.
The ALJ did believe the agent:
I find that Diehl threatened Diakite. His credibility was shaken by first stating that his words to her was that you are “killing me with your stupidity and then changing that testimony to state that you are “killing me with your bullshit.”
So for all of you aspiring CPAs out there, some lessons:
• Try not to let client tax matters get to a point where you have to argue on a hold for collection.
• Don’t threaten to kill the agents. They don’t like that, and it tends to make it more difficult to get them to help your client.
•Don’t be a pottymouth. That bad language completely blew it with that nice administrative law judge.
It really sucks when tragedy is caused by utter stupidity and that’s exactly what we have in the Chicago ‘burbs. Timothy Salvesen, an accountant from Wheaton, was charged with aggravated street racing and leaving the scene of a fatal crash in relation to an incident that occurred back in January.
Killed in the crash were 32-year-old Joseph Paliokaitis of North Aurora, who prosecutors said appeared to be racing with Salvesen as both drove west on Golf Road at speeds that two witnesses estimated at 80 to 90 mph.
The speed limit on that stretch of four-lane road was 55 mph, Assistant State’s Attorney during Salvesen’s bond hearing Tuesday.
As the two westbound lanes merged into one, Paliokaitis apparently lost control of his 2003 Jaguar and rolled into eastbound traffic, striking a 2001 Hyundai Tiburon head-on.
The crash killed its driver, 62-year-old Migdalia Bloch. of Hoffman Estates, who was on her way home from work, McCarthy said.
Salvesen’s attorney said his client, an accountant who has no prior criminal record, will fight the charges that could send him to prison for up to 15 years.
“It’s an unfortunate situation and Tim maintains his innocence,” defense attorney Henry Samuels said.
After poking around a bit, we found a Tim Salvesen on LinkedIn who is a Senior Audit Manager at KPMG and another Tim Salvesen on Facebook who lives in Barlett, IL (a town next to Wheaton) and lists “KPMG” on his networks but we have not confirmed that the “accountant” charged is the “auditor” we found online.
Messages left with a KPMG spokesman, Mr. Samuels, and Tim Salvesen in KPMG’s Chicago office have not been returned.
UPDATE: A couple more reports give us more details that indicate that Salvesen “accountant” is Salvesen “KPMG auditor.” First, the Tribune reports more details of the crash, saying it was “apparently impromptu […]as the men did not know each other.” It also states that Mr. Salvesen is “an ex-Marine” which matches the profile on LinkedIn.
But the mugshot from ABC7 may be the clincher:
This looks a lot like the guy on LinkedIn but now the photo from the profile no longer appears (it’s not just me, DWB confirmed). Regardless, it’s increasingly appears that Salvesen is Salvesen and since no one likes to return our phone calls, we’ll leave it up to you to decide.
37-year-old Wheaton accountant charged in drag-racing crash that killed two [CST]
Man charged with street-racing months after fatal crash [CT]
Accountant charged in drag racing crash that killed 2 [ABC7]
From the mailbag: “The author is a newly appointed manager and a certified d-bag. His email is serious.”
Hi Guys –
It has come to our attention that there are several people making animal noises around the office. I feel it shouldn’t need to be pointed out that this is not appropriate in the office and can be very uncomfortable/awkward for others. Aside from co-workers, we also have prospects, clients, recruits, etc. walking through the halls on a daily basis. Hearing animal sounds made toward each other does not give a good impression of [a firm who, we are told, is “über-sensitive”] and our abilities to those people. It also does not go unnoticed by partners/senior managers/managers.
Please be mindful of those that could be in your audience. Please see me if you have any concerns or questions.
Okay, team. Lots to discuss here aside from guessing the zoo where these beasts work.
1. I alluded to a noise from a cow, pig, chicken, or maybe even a llama but obviously there is room for other possibilities. Macaws? Beluga whales? Howler monkeys?
2. Are these noises mating calls, expressions of joy, or melancholic song?
3. If our barnyard animals guess is accurate, the firm should ask themselves: why would you hire Goat Boys in the first place?
4. If this some kind of involuntary function, how does one handle this appropriately without running aground of diversity issues?
5. Other thoughts, and obviously guesses to the firm, are welcome at this time.
In aren’t you glad these aren’t your internal controls news, former SDN Communications chief accountant Bradley Whitsell of Sioux Falls, SD pleaded guilty to mail fraud on Monday. The U.S. Attorney’s office states that 46-year-old Whitsell used his various oversight positions to embezzle more than $392,000 over a 10 year period beginning in 2000.
According to court documents, Whitsell used company accounts to pay his credit card bills and pay private school tuition. He also wrote checks to himself, redirected electronic payments to cover his expenses, created company checks on his office printer and requested reimbursement for expenses that already were paid by SDN to pay for various personal expenses, including a large landscaping project at his residence and his country club membership.
Whitsell used access to the company’s accounts payable system to change approved vendors’ names with his own, or with those of companies to which he owed money. He would then print out these checks on his office printer and change the names back to the appropriate vendor in the A/P system.
Whitsell could end up in prison for up to 20 years. He initially pleaded not guilty in June to one count each of Mail Fraud and Wire Fraud, each of which could potentially carry a 20 year sentence and a $250,000 fine. U.S. Attorney Brendan Johnson states that Whitsell has agreed to pay back the $392,111.65 and will also cover the $84,000 cost of the audit that uncovered his theft.
SDN CEO Mark Shlanta stated officials started noticing “financial irregularities” connected to Whitsell last year, at which time he was put on administrative leave so the company could conduct a forensic audit and internal investigation. Whitsell resigned before the investigation began (hint: red flag). “It’s been embarrassing for me,” Shlanta said. “I’ve been saddened by the events. Really, I felt betrayed in this past year. Brad was someone I hired and trusted.”
The interesting part of this otherwise droll and useless story is that before the house of cards came crashing down all around him, Whitsell served on the City of Sioux Falls audit committee, not only as a member but as its chair.
Back in June, Sioux Falls Councilor Vernon Brown told one SD blogger that Brad Whitsell received high marks from committee members for his work on the Audit Committee in setting up internal controls for city government. Oh the irony.
Whitsell is currently free on bond and returns to court for sentencing November 7th.
Accounting professors can be a strange lot. This is known. Whether they’re getting ejected from basketball games, taking off their shirts for money or taking their pants for free, there is no shortage of curious behavior.
Then there’s the story of Kemp Shiffer, who was a part-time professor at the University of Nevada-Reno and IRS investigator. Prof Shiffer was arrested on August 3rd when he collected $400 from a 18 year-old prostitute:
The woman told police that before she began prostituting for Kemp Shiffer, he made her “try out” for the job by performing multiple sex acts on him, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in Reno Justice Court to support his Aug. 3 arrest.
After Shiffer took the money from the 18-year-old Eureka, Calif., woman at the Peppermill Resort Casino Spa just before 10 p.m. Aug. 3, detectives of the regional Street Enforcement Team arrested him.
“He spontaneously stated ‘I am not a pimp. I didn’t collect her money as her pimp. I collected it to protect her,’” according to the affidavit filed last week against the 58-year-old.
Apparently this isn’t Shiffer’s first attempt at “protection” as the Reno Gazette-Journal also reports that he quit the IRS after an investigation into his attempt to use “his authority and his badge to secure women to work as prostitutes for him.”
The reader who pointed us to the story simply had this to say, “And he was my favorite accounting professor when I was in school… who knew?”
Hopefully none of your female classmates.
58-year-old Charles Shaffer has been ordered to serve two to four years in prison for stealing nearly $400,000 from his employer to fund a nine-year-long coke habit.
According to testimony, Shaffer stole $381,361 from telecommunications consulting firm Icore Inc. between 2001 and 2010 by writing checks to himself from a medical expense reimbursement employee fund.$381,361 over a nine year period really isn’t that bad of a cocaine habit, unless the guy was buying crap $20 grams from club kids. Think about it… if he was snorting up a really good gram a day at $100 a gram that’s $36,500 a year, but doesn’t take into account high-stress, high-use days like holidays, birthdays, anniversaries and yearly internal audits. Oh wait, obviously they didn’t care about that last one.
“He stole money from Icore, put it up his nose and Icore suffered the consequences,” said Lehigh County Judge Robert L. Steinberg in his decision.
The saddest part of this story (besides the part where the cokehead robs his employer for 9 years and no one seemed to notice) is that Shaffer’s actions very nearly caused the small company, which employs about 15, almost went under had they not had insurance and taken out a loan to stay afloat. “We came pretty close to shutting the doors,” said company VP Paul Kutches in testimony. “(Shaffer) was entrusted to make sure the finances were on the right path.” They were on the right path, alright, straight up his nose. “I would just hope this court imposes a sentence that reminds Mr. Shaffer of stabbing his friends in the back every day,” said Kutches when asked what sort of sentence he’d like to see his former employee receive in this case.
Shaffer started with the company in 1997, however company bank records only go back to 2001. Company officials first contacted investigators in June 2010 when they discovered missing money and Shaffer was arrested the following August. At that time, he signed over his $33,634 company retirement plan and forfeited his $80,000 a year salary.
Now that he’s off the powdered sauce, Shaffer is showing signs of regret for his actions. “There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t feel remorseful,” he told the judge.
Remember, kids: internal controls are an awesome, awesome thing.
Accountant gets prison for embezzling to buy drugs [Morning Call]
32-year-old Timothy David Rickman – accused of breaking into the home of ex-girlfriend Michelle Deak in January 2009, stabbing her in the head, burning her arm with a cigarette lighter and choking her, as well as hitting her 8-year-old daughter – has accepted a plea bargain in his bizarre case. Rickman will serve 60 days in jail, with 120 days of electronic monitoring after and 5 years of probation.
If Rickman violates his probation, he could serve at least four years in prison and up to six and a half years.
Rickman’s lawyer Bernard Condlin insists that accepting the plea does not translate into an admission of guilt for his client but states that Rickman takes responsibility for the charges and their consequences (er, isn’t that an admission of guilt?).
We were unable to find a record of Rickman in the North Carolina Board of Accountancy’s database, so it can be assumed he just wasn’t cut out to be a CPA. I guess that means the integrity of the profession isn’t at all dented by this little aggro freak show’s actions?
As far as embezzlements go, Gary Williams did all right for himself. As the CFO of Marian Gardens Tree Farm, he allegedly walked away with $15 million or so before he was convicted of tax evasion and mail fraud related to said allegations. He was pretty good at disposing of the money, as the Orlando Sentinel reports, “[he] spent $1,800 at John Craig Clothiers in Winter Park, treated himself to nearly $9,000 in Prada luggage and leather goods, and indulged in $15,000 in services at an exclusive resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica.” Obviously this leaves $14 mil or so to throw around and it doesn’t appear that this was a problem:
[Prosecutor Mark] Simpson said Gary Williams, who had blamed cocaine addiction for influencing his behavior, drew a six-figure salary from his employers from 2002 through 2007 while he was embezzling millions, destroying business records and encumbering farm equipment for secret loans for personal use.
He made large withdrawals from company accounts, telling bank officials that it was for “employee bonuses.”
Simpson said Williams, who divorced his wife of 35 years and became estranged from his two children, lavished younger men with jewelry, luxury automobiles, Caribbean vacations and gifts that could not be recovered. “This was not just theft,” Simpson said. “This was financial rape.”
Drugs! Phony bonuses! Hot men in hot cars in hot locations probably having hot sex! This is the stuff that straight-to-DVD movies are made of! But unfortunately the victims in this case aren’t doing as well as they have seen a dime of the money that disappeared:
The Hillary family, which owns the farm and employed Williams for two decades, has yet to receive any restitution from its portly former chief financial officer. According to court documents and interviews with prosecutors, Williams blew hundreds of thousands of dollars at lavish resorts in San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro, the Bahamas, Jamaica and the West Indies. He flew friends on chartered jets and helicopters; dined at five-star restaurants; hired a private chef; and partied at marquee nightclubs.
He explained frequent work absences by falsely claiming to have pancreatic cancer. His employers say they thought he was undergoing experimental treatments.
Williams did lose 100 pounds — but from gastric-bypass surgery, a farm executive said.
For whatever reason, the Sentinel felt it necessary to drag Williams’ big-bonededness into this story as it isn’t clear whether or not some of the loot was used to fund the surgery. At the very least, Williams, who is serving 12 years, can hopefully keep his figure in prison.
Jet-setting CFO gets dual terms for embezzling $15M at tree farm [Orlando Sentinel]
A Sydney accountant is set to plead guilty to defrauding her employer of $45 million [USD 47.9 million] before spending the money on several beachside apartments, champagne, diamond jewellery and Michael Jackson memorabilia.
Rajina Rita Subramaniam was working as a senior accountant with the financial group ING Australia in October 2009 when she was arrested for allegedly siphoning tens of millions of dollars from the company into a number of private accounts.
Police allege that a search of ING’s Kent Street office uncovered a cache of luxury items, including 600 pieces of jewellery from Tiffany & Co, Tag Heuer, Bulgari and Paspaley Pearls, 200 perfume and make-up items from Chanel and a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne.
Court told of $45m shopping spree [Sydney Morning Herald]
Where I come from, some of my friends had a saying, “There’s only one way to drive drunk…FAST!” Obviously this is dumb. Forget the fact that drinking and driving is dumb but exceeding the speed limit while drinking and driving is exponentially dumber. Inevitably this type of behavior will get you pulled over, at which point the opportunity for more dumb behavior presents itself. On the one hand you could simply jump out of the car, flee the scene, losing your shirt in the process because it will probably slow you down, only to be tackled, cuffed and babbling the Branded theme song in the back of a police cruiser. Another option would be to literally manifest the phrase “cop-slugging drunk.” And yet another option is to do what Alison Brookes did and opt for a more affectionate approach:
A driver who kissed a cop in a bid to avoid a parking ticket ended up losing her licence – after he smelled booze on her breath. Chartered accountant Alison Brookes, 51, planted the smacker on the police officer’s cheek after he spotted her parked on double yellow lines in Didsbury. But the officer got a whiff of alcohol – and arrested her. Brookes, of Fenwick Drive, Heaton Mersey, admitted drink driving and was banned for 14 months at Manchester Magistrates’ Court. Court chairman Stephen Terry told her: “Perhaps kissing the officer was a bit of a giveaway, but that’s by the by.”
The grand theft auto allegations stuck though.
Dykstra, 48, was charged with 25 misdemeanor and felony counts of grand theft auto, attempted grand theft auto, identity theft and other crimes, said Jane Robison, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. He faces up to 12 years in state prison if convicted.
His accountant and a friend were charged in connection with the alleged auto theft but not with drug crimes, Robison said.
Prosecutors contend that the three men tried to lease high-end cars from dealers this year by providing phony information and claiming credit through a phony business called Home Free Systems.
Two dealerships rejected the lease applications but a third allowed the men to drive off with three cars, according to a statement from the district attorney’s office.
Timothy Mask worked at Flint Hydrostatics for 25 years calling the company “a true blessing in my life.” Not an extraordinary statement, considering many people have strong feelings for the companies they serve but it’s possible that Mask felt that Flint was such a “blessing” because he spent the last twelve years allegedly “stealing” $1.2 million.
Things started unraveling when Tim up and resigned on May 5th, leaving his boss a Dear John letter of sorts:
“Effective immediately, I resign from Flint Hydrostatics, Inc.,” said the letter Timothy W. Mask left on the president’s desk.
“Flint has been a true blessing in my life,” wrote Mask, 46, of Corinth, Miss. “I will always cherish friendships that I have built and my fellow employees. It has just come time for me to move on to new endeavors.”
You see, Kevin Fienup, Flint’s director of business development and secretary, as well as the son of the company’s president, started looking into Mask’s old endeavors and found a number of checks that were made out to Mask and the company’s janitor. Allegedly, Mask would have his assistant cut checks to the janitor (or Mask if the janitor wasn’t available) who would cash them and then place the cash in a locked drawer in Mask’s office. According to the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Fineup “left his office door open and had documents on his desk about the irregular transactions the night before Mask resigned.” One might conclude that Tim saw said documents, figured the jig was up and sat down to write his heartfelt letter.
As for his “new endeavors” it appears that Mask may have been trying to make a break for it, as the Appeal also reports that he had a “two-week vacation to Hawaii” scheduled to start yesterday, had recently sent mail to a passport processing center and had started transferring $200,000 from his 401k. But instead he got arrested which probably kinda threw a wrench into his plans.
Stephen Siddell’s dishonesty led to 16 people losing their jobs while he and his wife, Louise Siddell, took luxury foreign holidays. They even posted photographs of their stay in a six bedroom villa in Cyprus on Facebook boasting, “because we’re worth it”. Liverpool Crown Court heard the couple had lock-up garage in Bromborough, which was an “Aladdin’s cave” full of their expensive furniture and designer goods. 24-year-old Louise Siddell had also used their ill-gotten gains to pay for jewellery and breast enhancement. [Wirral Globe]
Today in doing a disservice to accountants everywhere, Matthew Benjamin Mundy, a double-entry maven in Australia, was fined $500 for accidentally hitting an off-duty federal police officer with an egg.
Apparently MBM was attempting to hit his friend with the ellipsoidal embryo container, missed, and hit the officer who was sitting at a café. Accidents happen but Mundy’s employer better hope his professional misfires are far less material. [ABC]
Mark Schreiber, a former controller of fitness guru Tony Little’s business empire, has been accused of embezzling nearly $600k by forging Little’s signature. Apparently Schreiber was involved in some “online horse wagering” which must not have gone too well since he ended up…stealing money (allegedly).
According to T. Little’s lawyer, Latour “L.T.” Lafferty, the $600k is pocket change to his client but he’ll be damned if they aren’t going to pursue every means necessary to get every cent back:
“We’re certainly going to pursue any legal avenues to recover every cent that was taken from Mr. Little,” said his attorney, Latour “L.T.” Lafferty. “It doesn’t impact the financial well-being of Mr. Little. But certainly it’s a significant blow and a serious breach of Mr. Schreiber’s place as controller of his business operations.”
Since TL is a man of health and fitness and not of numbers, it’s not surprising that he’s found himself in this conundrum but he did have his suspicions:
Little realized something was amiss last year, according to court records, when he moved to fire Schreiber as a controller overseeing his Pinellas Park companies’ finances. He was dissatisfied with Schreiber, records show. He set up a July 27, 2010, meeting.
But before they could meet, Schreiber sent an e-mail: “I quit.”
After Little’s new accountant had been poking around for awhile, it was pretty obvious things weren’t kosher. They called in a forensic expert who discovered that 152 checks were drawn over 11 months to the sum of $583,379.
Right now the “degenerate gambler” motive seems to be the most plausible scenario, although it’s entirely possible that Mr Schreiber was sick with jealousy over the sexual tension between Little and his infomercial leading lady, Darla Haun. We’ve presented some footage that will likely be introduced into evidence during Schreiber’s trial:
In aren’t-you-glad-this-isn’t-you news, an Oregon accounting director has been indicted on one count of criminally negligent homicide and one count of failure to perform the duties of a driver when a person is killed.
On January 26, Les Schwab Tire Center Director of Accounting Bret Lee Biedscheid, 38, allegedly hit Anthony Martin, 48, around 11 pm while Martin was crossing the street on his bicycle. The grand jury made their determination based on witness testimony and videotape evidence.
Two days after the incident, Biedscheid’s lawyer contacted police and surrendered the 2008 GMC pickup matching the description of the truck involved in the crash.
Bend, Oregon police later served search warrants on Biedscheid’s house and seized computers, cell phones, GPS devices and other items. “I feel like if it had been myself or anyone else, we would have already been arrested just on the evidence that they already had,” said the victim’s sister.
Biedscheid has not been arrested and is scheduled to be arranged Thursday morning.
Slow down out there when you’re heading home from ANO, kids.
Michael Grossbach is taking it out on the help.
Michael Grossbach, 32, surrendered himself to police when he learned of his impending arrest for allegedly assaulting his office assistant on March 5, police said.
“Apparently there was an argument and he lunged at her, grabbing her hand forcefully,” said Sergeant Michael Buck of Irvington Police. “There were injuries, but nothing serious.”
Sergeant Michael Foley arrested the Garrison resident for having illegal physical contact with his 31-year-old employee at his accounting firm at 106 North Broadway. The defendant was charged with assault in the third degree, a misdemeanor. According to police, if convicted he is facing anything from a fine to one year in prison.
Question for the group: what could have been going on in this woman/accountant’s life that caused her to do the following?
An accountant drove into a bin man ‘in a rage’ after his lorry blocked the road, a court heard. Frances Henshaw, 43, was alleged to have snarled ‘like a rabid dog’ when she got stuck behind the wagon. She was hauled before the courts after bin man Craig Kelly claimed he was hit by her car as she forced her way through a tiny gap. Henshaw was found guilty of driving without due care and attention, leaving the scene of an accident and failing to report an accident.
We’ve come across a fair share of accountants that resemble a rabid dog (i.e. crazy eyes, violent biting, uncontrollable drooling) so that description is certainly believable but she does fall back on the passive nature of a many a beancounter:
She said: “They’d done a few clumps of bins and they’d made no effort to let me past. I felt there should have been an occasion where they acknowledged my presence. “I wasn’t shouting. I never shout at anyone. I avoid confrontation as a general rule. I would have stopped if I had hit someone. It’s just not something that’s in my nature to do, it’s incredulous to me.”
Remember this guy?
If you recall, Hector Sanchez swiped $40k from his church to spend in “casinos and restaurants” which is arguably the lamest thing you could do with forty large of a God’s money. What about spending it on a facial to soften that nice bone structure? Yeesh.
Forensic experts have determined the identity of the suicide bomber who killed himself and 36 other people at Domodedovo airport – an accounting student from the North Caucasus republic of Ingushetia, Moscow media reports said Friday. The forensic researchers, going by DNA evidence taken from the scene, identified the bomber as a 20-year-old who apparently was ‘pumped full’ of drugs before he carried out the January 24 attack.