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Press Release

Shavertown Man Charged With Embezzling Over $428,000 And Obstructing An IRS Investigation

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Pennsylvania

SCRANTON – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Richard J. Morgan, age 54, of Shavertown, Pennsylvania, was charged on June 27, 2017, in a criminal information with one count of bank fraud and one count of interfering with the administration of the internal revenue laws.


According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, Morgan owned and operated Wilkes-Barre Bookkeeping, LLC, a Shavertown, Pennsylvania-based business that provided payroll services to its clients. The information alleges that Morgan was contracted to pay employee payroll and salary expenses, to file IRS Form 941 Employer Quarterly Federal Tax Returns, and to remit employment tax liabilities to federal, state and local tax authorities for two of his clients, identified as Non-Profit Corporation #1 and Corporation #1. Morgan allegedly failed to file the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Forms 941 and to remit the employment taxes to the appropriate authorities for both clients, instead embezzling the funds for his own personal use. The information alleges that between December 13, 2011 and September 16, 2014, Morgan embezzled $305,756.30 from Non-Profit Corporation #1, and that between January 7, 2015 and October 14, 2016, Morgan embezzled $54,607.65 from Corporation #1.


The information also alleges that Morgan served as a Treasurer for an entity identified as Non-Profit Corporation #2, and was tasked with selling its assets and winding up its operations when it closed in February 2010. Between March 16, 2010 and December 9, 2014, after paying Non-Profit Corporation #2’s outstanding liabilities, Morgan allegedly embezzled the remaining residual sales proceeds of $68,172.


The information further charges that when the IRS commenced an investigation of Morgan’s activities, he took steps to obstruct the investigation. Between May 28, 2013, and August 28, 2014, Morgan allegedly made misrepresentations to IRS employees, claimed to be working with fictitious IRS employees to resolve the matter, and provided the IRS with altered bank statements and accounting records to conceal his embezzlements.


The government also filed a plea agreement with Morgan to the charges, which is subject to approval of the court. A date for his initial appearance has not been set.


The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Phillip J. Caraballo is prosecuting the case.


Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.


A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.


The maximum penalty under federal law for the most serious charge is 30 years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated June 28, 2017