Former Auffenberg Finance Manager Pleads Guilty to Misappropriating Funds
Robert M. Garcia, 54, of Maryland Heights, Mo., plead guilty in federal court to defrauding the Auffenberg Dealer Group, Inc., the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today.
Garcia was formerly employed as a finance manager for the Auffenberg Dealer Group in O’Fallon, Illinois, through April of 2011. As the finance manager, Garcia handled payment transactions for customers’ purchases of pre-owned automobiles. The indictment alleged that Garcia misappropriated Auffenberg funds from vehicle sales to customers and then used other customer funds from future sales to make up the shortages of prior sales. The total loss is approximately $99,000.
Garcia faces a sentence of up to 20 years’ in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, a term of supervised release of 3 years, a special assessment of $100, and mandatory restitution. Sentencing is set for August 10, 2012.
The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Secret Service and the O’Fallon Police Department with the assistance of the Auffenberg Dealer Group. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Norman R. Smith.