Springfield Woman Pleads Guilty to All Charges Related to Embezzlement from Former Employer
SPRINGFIELD, IL—A Springfield, Ill., woman, Alice M. Foss, 53, entered pleas of guilty today to all the charges against her related to her embezzlement of more than $400,000 from her former employer, a Springfield consulting and lobbying firm. Foss’s pleas followed three days of evidence presented by the government in Foss’s jury trial which began last week.
In a hearing this morning before U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough, Foss admitted that she embezzled money from Don Moss and Associates, a consulting and lobbying firm that specializes in services for disabled persons and other social causes. During the time of the fraud, from May 1997 to October 2009, Foss was employed as the firm’s chief financial officer, and in that capacity, had check-signing authority and control over the firm’s bank account and was responsible for paying the firm’s business expenses.
Foss admitted that she repeatedly wrote herself fraudulent bonus checks from the firm’s bank account, for a total of approximately $144,852. Foss fraudulently and repeatedly wrote herself checks out of the DMA bank account, falsely representing that the checks were reimbursements for business expenses she incurred, when, in fact, she knew the false expenses were simply one of the means she used to conceal her embezzlement from DMA.
As part of the fraud scheme, Foss admitted that she repeatedly used DMA’s bank account and credit card account to pay personal expenses, including checks and wire transfers for personal car payments, donations to a private school, and mailing payments to personal credit cards, totaling more than $200,000. Foss used the DMA credit card to pay for personal expenses including payments for clothing, groceries, gas, car washes and rentals, hotel rooms, hair salon and spa expenses, and veterinary bills.
Sentencing is scheduled on May 26, 2015. Under terms of the plea agreement in this case, based on the parties’ agreement that the advisory sentencing guideline range is 46 to 57 months in prison, the government has agreed to recommend a sentence no greater than 57 months in prison. In addition, Foss agreed that the amount of restitution owed is in excess of $400,000. Foss was charged with mail fraud (five counts), wire fraud (seven counts), and access device fraud (one count.) Foss remains on bond pending sentencing.
The charges are the result of investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the FBI. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy A. Bass.