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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Louisiana

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Business Manager Sentenced To Prison For Fraud

United States Attorney Walt Green announced today the sentencing of RENEE ELISE BEARD, 50, of Addis, Louisiana. BEARD previously pled guilty on December 2, 2013 to wire fraud in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343.

BEARD was sentenced today by United States District Judge James J. Brady to 27 months imprisonment and a term of 2 years on supervised release following imprisonment. BEARD was also sentenced to pay restitution in the amount of $295,587 to the victim of her fraud. Additionally, BEARD was ordered to forfeit $251,596 to the United States, said funds being the property which was derived from her scheme to defraud.

BEARD was the manager of business operations for Campbell Companies, a local business engaged in the development and management of commercial real estate and multi-family residential properties. BEARD was responsible for bookkeeping, management of financial operations, and administration of the company's payroll. BEARD enjoyed unlimited access to Campbell’s accounting and payroll systems, bank accounts, and computer systems. During the years 2008 through 2012, BEARD was authorized to initiate and execute online banking transactions for the purpose of disbursing payroll to Campbell’s employees, including payments to herself. BEARD used her position as Campbell’s business manager to make numerous transfers from a Campbell Companies’ business bank account to her personal bank accounts which exceeded the salary to which she was entitled. As a result of making unauthorized transfers of funds from the bank account of Campbell to her personal bank accounts, BEARD fraudulently obtained approximately $251,596 to which she was not entitled. BEARD used wire communications in order to execute her scheme.

United States Attorney Green stated: “Corporate fraud is inexcusable and is too often perpetrated by insiders who abuse the trust afforded to them. It is often the honest employees who are left to feel the greatest financial brunt of such wrongdoing. Our office will continue to aggressively pursue such matters.”

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Rene I. Salomon.

Updated December 15, 2014