Local Accountant Facing Jail Time After Proven Fraud Charges
Professionals nowadays are urged to have professional liability insurance because this will serve as a tool in case one is caught in an undesirable situation. Insurance policies the likes of an investigation insurance does not mean that one committed something wrong but it helps them when they are caught in the wrong side of the law. This is most important in accountants as proven by the case of a Michael Sallee who is a 59 year old accountant from Bloomington.
He is currently facing jail time for a period of 33 months after he was convicted of mail fraud. According to Judge Tanya Walton Pratt of US Southern Indiana District Court, he passed an order that full restitution should be paid by Sallee and as of writing he has already paid $168,000.
Sallee used to be an accountant at Bloomington as well as a financial advisor. His trouble started when he was charged after he was caught stealing almost $1.2 million dollars of fund from his client. He has been the accountant of the victim since 1997 when he handled the victim’s family business which was sold on the same year. They have been family friends for a long time.
It was December 2003 when he started transferring some of the money from the bank and investment accounts of the victim to his own. He used the money for personal reasons on almost 100 different times. Authorities were also able to uncover that he used some of the money for lavish vacations such as going to the Yellowstone National Park, Mackinac Island and visiting Disney World. The fund transfer continues to happen until August of 2013.
Of the entire 98 payments, Sallee was able to divert $1,193,781. According to the documents, the client was unaware of the payments that Sallee was making to his account. The fact is that Sallee has constant communication with the client and he assured her that her money is safe and she can use it anytime she wants.
In the last few years, Sallee has been presenting his client’s daughter false statements that show how the money has grown more than the actual amount expected. Unintentional mistakes and errors made by an accountant can be covered by investigation insurance but fraud cases such as this is something that should not happen because financial advisors should be trusted with their client’s money.