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Press Release

Morton Man Pleads Guilty to Two Felony Counts in Connection with Scheme to Defraud Former Employer

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of Illinois

PEORIA, Ill. – A Morton, Illinois, man, Aaron Rossi, 40, pleaded guilty today to two felonies connected to a scheme to defraud both his former employer, a Bloomington, Illinois, medical clinic, and the United States. Rossi pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of filing a false federal tax return in relation to this scheme. Sentencing for Rossi has been scheduled for June 5, 2024, at the U.S. Courthouse in Peoria, Illinois.

A federal grand jury initially returned an indictment in March 2022, charging Rossi with three counts of filing false tax returns. A superseding indictment was returned in July 2022 that added six counts of mail fraud.

In court before Chief U.S. District Judge Sara Darrow, Rossi admitted that he had carried out the scheme. He told the judge that he had not given all of his earnings information to his accountant so that he would not have to pay taxes on that income. He also admitted that he had taken funds from his former employer, Central Illinois Orthopedic Surgery in Bloomington, without their knowledge or permission, and had purchased personal items, including clothing and an ultra-high-definition big screen television, which he had mailed to his home. 

During the hearing, the government noted that Rossi had been involved in extensive fraud upon his employer. This fraud included his purchase of thousands of dollars of clothing from an upscale men’s store and payment for that clothing using company funds. Rossi hid his clothing purchases by calling them “medical supplies” or “uniforms” in his employer’s books and records. Rossi’s undisclosed expenditures also included leasing a luxury vehicle for himself and renting a private plane for his bachelor party. The government further stated that in just 2017, Rossi had more than $500,000 in income that he purposefully hid from the United States and did not declare on his taxes.

Rossi was originally released on bond following indictment but was placed in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service in September 2023 after multiple bond violations. He remains in custody pending sentencing.

Rossi faces statutory penalties of up to 20 years’ imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for the mail fraud count, and up to three years’ imprisonment, followed by one year of supervised release, for the false tax return count. Each of the counts also carries the potential of a fine.

The case investigation was conducted by the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Springfield Field Office. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Douglas F. McMeyer and Tanner K. Jacobs represent the government in the prosecution.

Updated February 6, 2024

Financial Fraud