From The Trussville Tribune staff reports
BIRMINGHAM – Federal prosecutors have charged a Shelby County woman on multiple counts of wire fraud for stealing from the Bessemer company where she had worked as a bookkeeper, announced U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and FBI Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp Jr.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office filed a four-count information last week in U.S. District Court charging Lucy Woods, 52, of Pelham, with stealing more than $150,000 from her former employer, Robert Warnock Co. Inc.
The company is a manufacturer’s representative that sells capital equipment for the oil and gas industry.
In conjunction with the charges, the government also filed a plea agreement with Woods. She must appear before a judge to enter a guilty plea.
“This is another example of a case where an employee had access to financial information as part of her job duties and took great advantage of and violated her employer’s trust,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Robin Beardsley Mark.
“Businesses should be able to trust their employees with confidential business information and when that trust is broken, the employee should be held accountable.”
While employed by Robert Warnock, Woods fraudulently charged personal expenses totaling more than $30,000 on a corporate credit card account. She also forged, and made payable to herself, more than $120,000 in unauthorized checks from the corporate bank account, according to the charges and plea agreement.
The maximum penalty for each count of wire fraud is 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The FBI investigated the case in conjunction with the Bessemer Police Department. Mark is prosecuting the case.