Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Nevada, Mo., woman pleaded guilty in federal court today to a bank fraud scheme in which she embezzled from her employer.
Patricia Culbertson, 53, of Nevada, waived her right to a grand jury and pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge David P. Rush to a federal information that charges her with bank fraud and filing a false tax return.
Culbertson worked for Barrington Manufacturing Corporation as a book keeper from June 2009 until she was suspended on June 24, 2014.
By pleading guilty today, Culbertson admitted that she forged the company owner’s signature on checks from the company’s bank account without authorization in order to cover her gambling debts and for other personal expenses. The checks were either deposited into Culbertson’s personal bank account, the bank accounts of her mother and son, or the bank account of her company, PC Tech. After reviewing all of the account records, agents were able to determine that approximately $374,943 had been fraudulently withdrawn from Barrington’s bank account.
Culbertson also admitted that she failed to report this embezzled income on her federal income tax returns for the years 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013. Culbertson’s actions resulted in a total tax loss to the federal government (without penalties and interest) of $72,246. The total tax loss to the state of Missouri (without penalties and interest) was $17,352.
According to today’s plea agreement, a final loss figure and restitution amounts have not been finalized. Final loss and restitution figures will be presented to the court prior to sentencing, or evidence will be presented to the court for a final ruling on this matter.
Under federal statutes, Culbertson is subject to a sentence of up to 33 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $1,100,000 and an order of restitution. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Carney. It was investigated by IRS-Criminal Investigation, the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the El Dorado Springs, Mo., Police Department.