Two Nigerian Nationals Plead Guilty, and One Sentenced to Prison for International Inheritance Fraud Scheme That Defrauded Elderly U.S. Victims
A former chief deputy auditor for LaPorte County, Indiana, was convicted today by a federal jury in the Northern District of Indiana of embezzling over $150,000 from the LaPorte County government, tax fraud and defrauding her elderly father-in-law out of at least $400,000.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney David A. Capp of the Northern District of Indiana made the announcement.
Mary Ray, 67, of La Porte, Indiana, was convicted of two counts each of theft of government monies and making false statements on a tax return, and with seven counts of wire fraud. Ray will be sentenced by Judge Jon E. Deguilio of the Northern District of Indiana on Dec. 22, 2015.
According to evidence presented at trial, from September 2011 through December 2012, while she served as deputy chief auditor for LaPorte County, Ray embezzled over $150,000 from county coffers, and underreported her income on her U.S. Individual Tax Returns for those years by failing to report the embezzled funds. Evidence at trial also showed that Ray defrauded her 86-year-old father-in-law, a disabled veteran, out of at least $400,000 that he entrusted her to oversee. The trial evidence also demonstrated that Ray used the funds that she embezzled from LaPorte County and stole from her father-in-law to gamble at casinos.
This case was investigated by the FBI and IRS-Criminal Investigation, with assistance from the Indiana State Police, the LaPorte County Sheriff’s Department and the Indiana State Board of Accounts. The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Peter Halpern of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Donald J. Schmid of the Northern District of Indiana.