A former Santa Monica resident will return to Los Angeles to face charges of identity theft and embezzlement. According to authorities, the man stole $22M from his employer to fund buy-ins at high-stakes poker tournaments. He also used some of the money to pay for personal expenses and to invest in cryptocurrencies.
Authorities arrested the man in Las Vegas, where he currently resides. He faces 11 counts of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. He also faces two forfeiture counts.
Between October 2015 and March 2019, the man served as the vice president of accounting and finance for a Santa Monica digital marketing firm. The firm recently relocated to London, England and has continued operations there. While working for the company, he wired funds from the company’s bank accounts to his own. He also created fake financial records to disguise the thefts and forged another executive’s signature on fake invoices. He used company funds exceeding $2.3M to pay other poker players and to pay off his credit cards. He also used nearly $8.5M in company funds to invest in cryptocurrencies. The company fired the man earlier this year.
If convicted on all charges, the man could spend as much as 200 years in federal prison.
Santa Monica identity theft attorney
When you face charges of federal identity theft, hire an experienced identity theft attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has 35 years of experience in federal criminal defense. He takes cases in any US federal district court. He also takes state level cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California.
Identity theft is interesting to law enforcement because it often leads to other, more significant crimes. Currently, federal identity theft convictions can result in sentences of up to 15 years in prison. Other crimes often associated with identity theft -like wire fraud- can land a defendant in prison for up to 30 years. In addition, both crimes include hefty fines.
That’s why you need the assistance of an experienced, federal criminal defense attorney. Federal prosecutors rarely take up cases they’re not sure they can win, so having an aggressive attorney is a requirement. Mr. Helfend’s first priority will be to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. When that’s not possible, he will work to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
Don’t rely on inexperience to defend you, and don’t assume that a guilty plea is in your best interest. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County identity theft case.
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