Trusted Bookkeeper Pockets $6.9 Million
Started writing checks to herself in 1999
A bookkeeper who embezzled $6.9 million from a Massachusetts construction company over a seven-year period was recently sentenced to four years in prison.
Angela Buckborough Platt, who had earned $40,000 a year working for J&J Materials of Rehoboth, Mass., spent the money on a ranch in Vermont, a life-size statue of Al Capone, vacations, cars and for Burt Bacharach to sing at her brother's wedding. "I'm very ashamed of what I did," Platt tearfully told U.S. District Judge William Young in federal court.
According to the Department of Justice, over the years, Platt continued to feed her fetish for celebrity memorabilia and movie props. Her purchases: a 20-foot tall, smoke-emitting dragon with hydraulically powered wings, six $3,000 talking trees like those in the Wizard of Oz and a 9-foot-tall grizzly bear. She also planned a lavish wedding for her brother that would have included a $15,000 fireworks show.
Young ordered Platt to repay $4.48 million, plus interest, to her former employer. Her former boss said he had to lay off 35 workers because of his losses. Platt began writing checks to herself
-- for as much as $50,000 -- starting in 1999. Her scheme wasn't discovered until 2006, when another bookkeeper was added to the J&J staff.