February 17, 2021
ST. LOUIS – United States District Decide Henry Autrey sentenced Stephanie Baker to 12 months and a single day in jail together with restitution to the victims in the sum of $192,336.74 these days. The 48-yr-old O’Fallon, Missouri resident pleaded guilty, in October, to 3 counts of mail fraud connected to her former placement in the accounting section of Prairie Farms Dairy Provide Business.
Baker was an staff of Prairie Farms, doing work in that firm’s accounting division. Baker’s responsibilities and tasks included making use of and allocating Prairie Farms purchaser payments to their consumer accounts. As component of her obligations, Baker would routinely receive checks from Prairie Farms customers, and make accounting entries to use these checks to every single customer’s account and as a result lessen the equilibrium owed to Prairie Farms of that unique customer account by the total of the examine gained.
C.S. owned and operated a Dairy Queen restaurant franchise in southern Illinois. DQ Columbia preserved an account at Prairie Farms and purchased and been given merchandise from Prairie Farms on a normal basis. DQ Columbia was required beneath its franchise settlement to purchase and receive considerably all its meals, dairy items and provides from Prairie Farms.
Beginning in or about March, 2018 and continuing by means of in or about December, 2018, Baker devised, supposed to devise, and knowingly participated in a plan to defraud and get income from Prairie Farms and C.S., in an approximate amount of money of $192,336.74, by usually means of materially phony and fraudulent pretenses, representations and guarantees.
Baker obtained and applied payments from Prairie Farms buyers other than DQ Columbia to DQ Columbia’s account. DQ Columbia, for that reason, obtained credit rating and a reduction it its account balance for payments that ended up not designed by DQ Columbia, but instead were created by other Prairie Farms consumers. More, the other Prairie Farms consumers who designed the precise payments did not receive credit and a reduction in their very own account balances. As section of her plan, Baker misapplied about $143,933.74 in other client payments to the DQ Columbia account. Baker withheld and did not mail out statements to the other Prairie Farms buyers so that people other clients would not notice that their prior payments to Prairie Farms had not been credited to their accounts.
Baker falsely represented, to C.S., for DQ Columbia to continue on acquiring meals, dairy products and solutions and provides from Prairie Farms, C.S. needed to make dollars payments personally to Baker. At Baker’s path, C.S. achieved with Baker on quite a few occasions and sent funds to Baker dependent upon Baker’s bogus representations that she would provide the income to Prairie Farms and credit DQ Columbia’s account accordingly. In fact, Baker stored the dollars she received from C.S., did not credit history DQ Columbia’s account for the income payments, and made use of the dollars for her very own personal use, which includes for the boarding and related expenses for demonstrate horses and other general living fees, unrelated to the respectable company of Prairie Farms. C.S. fulfilled with Baker on a lot of instances and built cash payments to Baker totaling around $48,403.00. Prairie Farms and its proprietors experienced no information of the income payments which C.S. made to Baker and acquired no part of these funds payments.
Baker acquired various checks from Prairie Farms shoppers by the U.S. mail and as element of her plan misapplied all those payments as credits to the account of DQ Columbia. .
The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated this circumstance. Assistant U.S. Legal professional Hal Goldsmith dealt with the scenario for the U.S. Attorney’s Place of work.
This push launch was produced by the US Attorney’s Business office, Japanese District of Missouri. The views expressed here are the author’s individual.