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Press Release

Former Area Controller Sentenced on Fraud & Money Laundering Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Missouri

St. Louis, MO – KELLEY BARATTA was sentenced to 30 months in prison involving her scheme to embezzle money from her employer while she was controller of the company.  Barrata was also ordered to pay more than $1.2 million in restitution to her former employer.

According to court documents, between 2007 and March 2012, Baratta was employed as controller of Media Management, Inc. (MMI) of Chesterfield, Missouri.  She was responsible for payroll, accounts payable and receivable, and certain human resource matters.  She initially performed these duties at the offices in Chesterfield, until she relocated to New York State, but continued to work as controller for MMI. After being terminated, MMI discovered that Barrata had embezzled from MMI between 2009 and 2012 by falsifying her salary in computer-based payroll system to cause the system to pay her an inflated salary.  Additionally, Baratta was found to have transferred company funds directly to her bank account.  In all, Baratta was found to have stolen $1,209,249 over the three-year period.

"The IRS enforces the nation's tax laws, but also takes particular interest in cases where someone, for their own personal benefit, has taken what belonged to others," said Andrew Thornton, Acting Special Agent in Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation.

Baratta, Auburn, NY, formerly of St. Louis County, pled guilty earlier this year to two felony counts of wire fraud and one felony count of money laundering. She appeared today for sentencing before United States District Judge Rodney Sippel.

This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Tom Albus handled the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Updated November 6, 2015