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Press Release

Former Payroll Administrator Sentenced to Eight Years in Prison for Stealing Over $1.6 Million from Former Employer

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Stole Money on More Than 500 Occasions

            WASHINGTON – Eleanor R. Milligan, 61, a longtime payroll administrator from Laurel, Md., was sentenced today to eight years in prison for carrying out a scheme in which she embezzled more than $1.6 million from her former employer.

            The announcement was made by Acting U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips and Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office Criminal Division.  

            Milligan was found guilty by a jury in July 2021, following a trial in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, of wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and first-degree theft. She was sentenced by the Honorable Timothy J. Kelly. The Court also ordered Milligan to pay restitution in the amount of $1,618,082 as well as a forfeiture money judgment in the same amount. Following her prison term, she will be placed on at least three years of supervised release.

            According to the government’s evidence at trial, except for brief periods, Milligan worked from 1998 to 2016 for a company based in Washington, D.C. Beginning in at least or about August 2009, and continuing until in or about March 2016, Milligan used her fellow employees’ names and personal identifying identification without authority to transmit false payment requests to herself through the employer’s payroll processing system.

            In total, Milligan stole money on more than 500 occasions, totaling $1,618,082. In addition, when she was nearly caught, Milligan created a fake email and mailing address in the name of another employee, whose identity she used to hide her scheme and that she was actually receiving the fraudulent payments herself.

            In announcing the sentence, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillips and Special Agent in Charge Jacobs commended the work of those who investigated the case from the FBI’s Washington Field Office. They also expressed appreciation for the assistance provided by the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). They commended the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialists Chad Byron and Michon Tart, Victim-Witness Service Coordinator Tonya Jones, Supervisory Litigation Technology Specialist Leif Hickling, Litigation Technology Specialist Jeanie Latimore-Brown, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Diane Lucas and Christine Macey, who prosecuted the case.

Updated October 22, 2021

Financial Fraud