One hundred and twenty months in federal prison and over $5.7 million in restitution to be paid, that is what Susan Gail Ray, of Bridgeport, Texas was sentenced to for her role in a massive theft while she was employed as comptroller. Ray admitted that she defrauded the Gasparilla Inn by fraudulently transferring money out of its bank account and into her own personal bank accounts while she was employed as its comptroller.
According to the US Attorney’s news release:
Ray began working as the Gasparilla Inn’s comptroller in 2000 and between October 2002 and January 2007, she fraudulently obtained approximately $6,009,500 from the Inn. Ray was responsible for calculating payroll for Gasparilla Inn and transferring payroll funds from the company’s bank accounts. She submitted payroll figures to Gasparilla Inn, then, after receiving approval, drafted new bank transmittal forms that contained fraudulently inflated payroll figures. She then submitted the forms to Englewood Bank and instructed Englewood Bank to transfer the fraudulently increased amounts from Gasparilla Inn’s general account to its payroll account.
After the fraudulently increased sums were wired into Gasparilla Inn’s payroll account, Ray wired the excess funds from Englewood Bank in Boca Grande, Florida, into her own personal bank accounts at USAA Federal Savings Bank in San Antonio, Texas, and MacDill Federal Credit Union in Tampa, Florida. After wiring funds into her accounts, Ray withdrew the fraudulently obtained funds and deposited those funds into her account at The Bank in Weatherford, Texas. She used the stolen funds to purchase, among other things, a ranch and horses in Texas.
As a speaker on white collar crime and business ethics, I often say: “Every choice has a consequence!” Again, with a substantial prison sentence issued, once again the fact that you reap what you sow has come true. Remember, only positive choices can yield positive results. It appears that Ray clearly knew what she was doing. Some times I find that people get caught up in circumstances and make poor choices that lead to trouble. Here it seems that in the end, Ray was looking for trouble. My guess…she’ll figure out during her ten years incarcerated that “crime doesn’t pay.” Ray is age 52.
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