Two Plead Guilty to Federal Wire Fraud Connected to Scheme to Defraud The Department of Veteran Affairs
NEW ORLEANS – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Louisiana announced today that RACHEL E. LIPPS (“LIPPS”), age 40, of Slidell, LA was sentenced to 34 months imprisonment by the Honorable Susie Morgan for thirty-three counts of wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343 and a single count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A. For Counts 1-33, the Court imposed 10 month concurrent sentences to be served consecutively to a 24 month sentence LIPPS received for Count 34. Additionally, the Court ordered that LIPPS serve 3 year (Counts 1-33) and 1 year (Count 34) terms of supervised release, all to run concurrently. LIPPS was ordered to pay $3400 in special assessment fees and restitution in the amount of $473,978.53.
According to court documents, between January 2013 and October 2017, LIPPS served as a part-time bookkeeper for Business A. Business A was a Louisiana corporation domiciled in Slidell, Louisiana. LIPPS was entrusted with the daily accounting and her job functions included accessing and utilizing QuickBooks software to issue payroll checks and pay vendors on behalf of Business A. Using QuickBooks, LIPPS fraudulently printed and cashed checks made payable to herself and several of her creditors. On or about July 22, 2014, LIPPS forged the signature of Business A’s co-owner on a check despite not having the authority to do so. In all, LIPPS stole $473,978.53 from Business A and its owners.
This matter was handled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Saint Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office. United States Attorney Duane A. Evans is prosecuting the case.