Former Lake Forest Park Water Clerk Pleads Guilty to Wire Fraud in Embezzlement Scheme
Falsified Documents to Unlawfully Obtain More Than $350,000
|U.S. Attorney’s Office September 11, 2013|
The former office manager of the Lake Forest Park Water District pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to wire fraud, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. Jackee Bormann-Zweekhorst, 41, used a variety of schemes to embezzle more than $350,000 from the small water district between 2004 and 2011. The exact amount of the embezzlement and the restitution owed will be determined at Bormann-Zweekhorst’s sentencing hearing scheduled for December 13, 2013, in front of Chief U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman.
According to the plea agreement and indictment returned in March 2013, Bormann-Zweekhorst was responsible for submitting bills to King County for reimbursement from water district funds. Bormann-Zweekhorst was supposed to prepare the vouchers and supporting documents for the water district commissioners to review and approve. The approved vouchers then went to King County for payment. Bormann-Zweekhorst admits she committed fraud through a variety of means. On multiple occasions, Bormann-Zweekhorst falsified time cards so that her children were paid for work never performed for the water district. The second aspect of the scheme involved the use of the water district credit card. Bormann-Zweekhorst used the card to pay for personal items and then caused the payment of water district funds to pay the bill. Some of the expenses she billed to the water district card included hot tub parts and service, boating and automotive equipment, and rental car expenses. Bormann-Zweekhorst also had the water district pay for personal items purchased with her American Express card and for other personal expenses, by claiming the expenses were work-related, when, in fact, they were not. Many of the receipts submitted for reimbursement were fabricated to support purchases that never occurred. Finally, Bormann-Zweekhorst purchased items for her own use from water district vendors and then had the water district pay the bill.
Wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The case is being investigated by the FBI and the Lake Forest Park Police Department. Significant assistance is being provided by the Washington State Auditor’s Office.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Diggs.
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.