Philadelphia Bookkeeper Convicted of Embezzling Almost $1.6 Million From Former Employer
PHILADELPHIA – U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain announced that Peter Goodchild, 56, of Philadelphia, PA, was convicted today at trial on charges of embezzling almost $1.6 million from his former employer, QwikSource, over a ten-year period beginning in 2005 and ending in 2015 through a wire fraud scheme. Goodchild was also convicted of money laundering, aggravated identity theft, and filing false income tax returns during this period.
Goodchild, former bookkeeper for QwikSource LLC/GMI Technical Sales LLC of Florham Park, NJ, opened a PayPal account using his employer’s name, transferred funds from QwikSource’s bank account to that PayPal account, from that PayPal account to another PayPal account belonging to his girlfriend, and from his girlfriend’s PayPal account to one or more of his personal bank accounts. The defendant further concealed the embezzlement by making financial entries on files he maintained for QwikSource that increased the cost of goods sold by the same amount of the money he wired from QwikSource’s account to the PayPal accounts and his personal bank accounts.
Further, Goodchild failed to pay taxes on his wealth. Between 2010 and 2015, he embezzled at least $854,800 and had unreported income of $231,100 in 2010, $215,100 in 2011, $83,600 in 2012, $125,000 in 2013, $152,000 in 2014, and $48,000 in 2015. His actions created a tax loss of approximately $240,648.
Goodchild was charged with and convicted on 48 counts of wire fraud, 10 counts of money laundering, six counts of filing a false income tax return, and one count of aggravated identity theft. Wire fraud and money laundering are punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Filing a false tax return is punishable by up to three years. Aggravated identity theft is punishable by a mandatory two years of prison that must follow any term imposed on the other counts. Additionally, Goodchild will be subject to restitution and/or forfeiture of money and substitute assets totaling $1,589,315.
“My office takes offenses like embezzlement, tax fraud and money laundering very seriously,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “The defendant stole more than a million dollars by abusing his position handling finances for his former employer. My Office will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to protect innocent individuals and businesses from being victimized by this type of fraud.”
“The role of IRS Criminal Investigation becomes even more important in embezzlement and fraud cases due to the complex financial transactions that can take time to unravel,” said Guy Ficco, Special Agent in Charge. “As we often see, federal tax laws are normally violated in these types of cases and IRS CI is committed to ensuring that everyone pays their fair share.”
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Anita Eve.