2009 Director’s Community Leadership Awards
Wagner Valuation and Financial Forensics
In October 2004, Judy Wagner was employed as the director of litigation and valuation services at Meyners + Company, LLC in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Ms. Wagner was appointed as receiver for P2RS Group Inc. by Judge Geraldine Rivera. The former partners of P2RS Group, Raul Parra and Harvey Peel, were involved in a lawsuit against one another over the assets of the company.
Upon taking control of P2RS Group, Ms. Wagner's duties and responsibilities included a review of the financial operations. During Ms. Wagner's thorough review of bank and investment account information, she became deeply concerned. Ms. Wagner discovered that Raul Parra was making large payments to New Mexico State Senator Manny Aragon and a company called Smart Solutions.
Smart Solutions was a company that Ms. Wagner didn't recognize, but that didn't stop her. She completed Internet searches with the Secretary of State's Office and determined that Sandra Martinez incorporated Smart Solutions. Ms. Wagner's curiosity paid off for the FBI and New Mexico taxpayers. Ms. Wagner soon learned that Sandra Martinez was the wife of Toby Martinez, the court administrator for the Metropolitan Court.
Ms. Wagner went to the U.S. Attorney's Office and the FBI with a five-inch binder of financial summary schedules, checks, e-mails, contracts, and other documents showing the connection between Parra, Aragon, Martinez, and Manuel Guara (another subcontractor), who Ms. Wagner suspected were sharing in illegal proceeds from the construction of the Metropolitan Court.
The FBI inherited an investigation that not only contained allegations, but proof of criminal activity between the co-conspirators. With the jump-start from Ms. Wagner, bank accounts were easily identified, obtained, and analyzed. The snapshot provided by Ms. Wagner gave a detailed picture of a public corruption scandal involving millions of dollars.
Ms. Wagner's assistance didn't stop there. The FBI began to look at other public projects completed by P2RS Group. Fortunately, Ms. Wagner volunteered her time and brought her outstanding forensic accounting abilities to bear and assisted the FBI in locating handwritten notes, checks, and financial documents indicating criminal activity on the construction of the Second Judicial District Courthouse and the Metropolitan Detention Center.
When the dust settled, eight individuals pled guilty in a $4.3 million scheme to steal money from the construction of the Metropolitan Court. They had stolen from the taxpayers of New Mexico. The formidable case that was brought against them was built upon the strong foundation of Ms. Wagner's efforts.