News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Shoreview bookkeeper sentenced for stealing from employer

February 14, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS – Earlier today in federal court in St. Paul, a bookkeeper from Shoreview
was sentenced for stealing more than $300,000 from her employer during an eight-year period.
United States District Court Judge Paul A. Magnuson sentenced Caren Lynn Schmidt, age 52,
to16 months in prison on one count of mail fraud and one count of tax evasion. Schmidt was
indicted on August 8, 2011, and pleaded guilty on October 27, 2011. Schmidt was also ordered
to pay $347,942.58 in restitution to the victims of her theft.

In her plea agreement, Schmidt admitted that from 2005 through August of 2010, she stole
money from Beck Northway Collision of Circle Pines, where she was employed as a
bookkeeper. Her responsibilities included writing checks, paying vendors, depositing cash, and
preparing the company’s ledgers and journals. It was during the course of that work that Schmidt
diverted business proceeds for her personal use, including the payment of personal credit card
bills. She also admitted that she wrote checks against the Beck checking account to pay for
personal expenses and provide money for herself. To further the scheme and keep it hidden from
her employer, Schmidt made false entries on the company books and records.

Schmidt also failed to report the stolen money as income on her personal income tax returns
between 2005 and 2010, resulting in a tax loss to the Internal Revenue Service of $80,520.

This case was the result of an investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the
Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S.
Attorney Tim Rank.

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