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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 30, 2016

Vineland, New Jersey, Man Admits Conspiracy, And Fraud And False Statements

CAMDEN, N.J. – A Vineland, New Jersey, man today admitted his role in a scheme to defraud a bank and to filing fraudulent tax returns, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Richard T. Pepe, 69, pleaded guilty before Chief U.S. District Judge Jerome B. Simandle in Camden federal court to a superseding information charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one count of fraud and false Statements on his 2008 U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

From 2004 through October 2008 Pepe knowingly conspired and agreed with others to execute a scheme to defraud M&T Bank. The object of the conspiracy was for Pepe, the general manager of Chevrolet 73, and others acting on Pepe’s behalf, to fraudulently obtain money from M&T Bank, intended as floor plan financing for Chevrolet 73, by providing false information to the bank. Pepe then converted that money – $2.95 million – to his own use to pay for personal expenses for himself and his family members.

Pepe also admitted he made false statements on his 2008 U.S. Individual Income Tax Return by claiming his total income for tax year 2008 to be $36,628, when he knew and believed his total income to be in excess of that amount.

The conspiracy charge to which Pepe pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000.  The fraud and false statement charge to which Pepe pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of three years in prison and a fine of $250,000. As part of the plea agreement, Pepe will make full restitution for all losses and consented to the entry of a forfeiture money judgment of $2.95 million. Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 14, 2016.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI Philadelphia Division’s Cherry Hill Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge William F. Sweeney Jr., and special agents of the IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jonathan D. Larsen, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacqueline M. Carle of the U.S. Attorney's Office Criminal Division in Camden.

Defense counsel: Thomas Young Esq. Assistant Federal Public Defender, Camden

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Tax
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
16-193
Updated September 1, 2016