Former Las Vegas Valley Water District Employee Sentenced to Four Years In Prison For $6.7 Million Ink/Toner Cartridge Scheme And Tax Evasion
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Jennifer J. McCain-Bray, aka JJ McCain, was sentenced today to 51 months in federal prison for committing mail fraud and tax evasion as part of a scheme to defraud the Las Vegas Valley Water District (LVVWD) of over $6.7 million, announced U.S. Attorney Nicholas A. Trutanich of the District of Nevada, Special Agent in Charge Aaron C. Rouse for the FBI, and Special Agent in Charge Tara Sullivan for the IRS-Criminal Investigation.
“Public service is a public trust,” said U.S. Attorney Trutanich. “Today’s sentencing demonstrates this office’s commitment to investigate and prosecute individuals who violate that trust by misusing their authority to benefit themselves at the expense of the community.”
“Ms. McCain-Bray deceived the Las Vegas Valley Water District by stealing over $6.7 million through her calculated scheme that falsely represented purchases. She then used the ill-gotten gains to fund a lavish lifestyle,” said SAC Rouse. “The FBI will continue working with our partners to investigate fraud and hold individuals in a position of trust accountable when failing to comply with the law.”
“Ms. McCain-Bray stole from our community, using Nevada taxpayer money to enrich her own life and then lied to the IRS,” said SAC Sullivan. “IRS-Criminal Investigation will continue to hold government employees to the highest standard.”
McCain-Bray, 43, of Las Vegas, previously pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of subscribing to a false tax return. In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Kent J. Dawson ordered her to pay $6,715,531 as part of a criminal forfeiture money judgment.
McCain-Bray worked as a purchasing analyst for the LVVWD and she was responsible for transmitting orders and payments to vendors when particular products were requested from LVVWD departments and employees. She admitted that between January 1, 2007 to about December 7, 2015, she devised a scheme to defraud the LVVWD by falsely representing that purchases of ink and toner cartridges were for the LVVWD, when she knew that the products were actually purchased for a New Jersey company which received and then resold the cartridges for its own profit. McCain-Bray instructed the vendor to ship the ink and toner cartridges from California and other locations to her at her LVVWD office in Las Vegas. She then relabeled the packages and shipped them to the New Jersey company. In exchange, the New Jersey company transferred money to McCain-Bray’s personal PayPal account. Financial records indicate that McCain-Bray used the fraud proceeds for personal expenses and purchases, including extensive home remodeling and improvements, trips, gifts to family members and friends, and other lifestyle expenses. Between 2007 and 2015, McCain-Bray fraudulently purchased approximately $6.7 million in ink and toner cartridges with LVVWD funds.
McCain-Bray also failed to report her profits from the scheme on her personal tax returns for tax years 2011 to 2015. For those years, she failed to report a total of $2,339,156 in taxable income to the IRS.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the IRS-Criminal Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Burns prosecuted the case.