FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 9, 2012
For Information Contact:
Former Employee Sentenced to 15 Months in Prison
In $900,000 Embezzlement Scheme Against XM Satellite Radio
- She Conspired to Take Money Intended for Vendors -
WASHINGTON - Valencia Person, 54, of Suitland, Md., was sentenced today to 15 months in prison for taking part in a scheme to embezzle more than $900,000 from her former employer, XM Satellite Radio, announced U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. and James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.
Person pled guilty in March 2012 to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. She was sentenced by the Honorable Reggie B. Walton in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Upon completion of her prison term, Person will be placed on three years of supervised release. In addition, as part of the plea agreement, Person agreed to a money judgment of $908,924, representing the amount of proceeds from the crime.
According to a statement of offense submitted to the Court by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri L. Schornstein, Person worked at XM Satellite Radio (now known as Sirius XM Radio, Inc.), a corporation based in Washington, D.C., as a coordinator in the Accounts Payable Department. Her duties included responsibility for payments to large vendors.
From 2005 until at least 2008, Person and an XM Satellite Radio Accounts Payable Administrator, Brenda L. Jones, embezzled nearly $909,000 from the company. They secretly diverted at least 26 payments, which were supposed to go to XM vendors, to bank accounts held by Jones. They covered up the activities by altering data in the company’s accounting system. Jones then gave a portion of the monies to Person.
Jones resigned in 2006. However, more than $690,000 of the money was transferred into her accounts after she had left the company.
According to Person, she personally benefitted from the scheme in an amount not exceeding $125,000.
Jones, 46, of Lothian, Md., pled guilty in January 2012 to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. She is to be sentenced Aug. 16, 2012, also by Judge Walton.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen and Assistant Director in Charge McJunkin praised those who worked on the case, including the Special Agents of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, as well as former Legal Assistant Jared Forney of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. They also commended the efforts of Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri L. Schornstein, who is prosecuting the case.