Two Connecticut Men Plead Guilty to Defrauding Employers
Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that JASON TORRANCE, 43, of East Haddam, and ADAM MEYERS, 43, of Southbury, pleaded guilty on February 23 in Bridgeport federal court to engaging in a fraud scheme against their respective employers.
According to court documents and statements made in court, between approximately March 2008 and August 2012, TORRANCE and MEYERS devised a scheme to defraud their employers by arranging for payment on goods that never shipped and instead diverting those payments to themselves. TORRANCE worked out of the New Haven branch of a New Jersey-based electrical and industrial supply company (“Distributor-1”), and MEYERS was a project manager for a New Britain-based electrical subcontractor (“Contractor”) that frequently purchased supplies from Distributor-1. A co-conspirator (“CC-2”) operated a smaller distributor (“Distributor-2”) based in Cheshire.
As part of the scheme, MEYERS identified to TORRANCE projects on which he believed the profit margin for Contractor would permit them to divert excess profits to themselves without Contractor becoming aware. MEYERS would submit a purchase order for materials to TORRANCE. TORRANCE then submitted a purchase order to CC-2 for the goods listed on the purchase order sent by MEYERS. CC-2 then submitted an invoice to Distributor-1 for the materials listed on the purchase order, and Distributor-1 paid the invoice by mailing a check to Distributor-2. Distributor-1 then invoiced Contractor for the goods that were on the purchase order and Contractor issued a check to Distributor-1. CC-2 then hand-delivered a business check to TORRANCE for approximately 90 percent of the money that had been paid by Distributor-1 to Distributor-2, and CC-2 retained the remaining 10 percent as his share of the proceeds from the scheme. TORRANCE then paid out a portion of the proceeds of the scheme to MEYERS.
At no time did any product on the purchase orders actually ship to the customer.
The victim companies lost more than $600,000 as a result of this scheme.
TORRANCE and MEYERS each pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. They are scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Stefan R. Underhill on May 18, 2015.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David E. Novick.