Wow…every choice has a consequence. Every presentation I make that statement is made. And, sure enough it is true!
Take, for example, Julia N. Bell. Seems that she went shopping, took vacations, and ate in restaurants. She did what normal people do every day. The only difference is that she did all of these things using the credit card of the company she worked for.
Now, most would think that when the bill came it, such a simple fraud would be caught. But alas…no. Seems that Bell was the office manager. So, not only did she use the card for her personal gain, but she paid the card from the company’s funds that she controlled.
Guess she thought as long as she controlled it…no one would notice.
Now in order for most white collar crimes to exist there has to be three things: (1) need; (2) opportunity and (3) rationalization. While I can’t speak to #1 or #3 – the clear lack of internal controls allowed for #2 to work in Bell’s favor. As a white collar crime and fraud speaker, more times than not it is #2 that has the greatest potential to either allow or prevent white collar crime.
In Bell’s case, she was sentenced in federal court for wire fraud. United States District Judge Cameron McGowan Currie sentenced Bell to 21 months in prison and ordered her to pay more than $140,000.00 in restitution.
If you know Julia N. Bell, feel free to comment. My guess is that she is a nice lady who got caught up in her own illusion. Now she will find that nothing she bought will be worth the time she will spend in prison.
White Collar Crime Speaker – Chuck Gallagher – signing off…