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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Local Woman Arrested for Defrauding Professional Football Player Out Of More Than $1 Million

HOUSTON – A 44-year-old Houston woman has been taken into custody following the return of a federal indictment charging her for her role in a scheme involving mail, bank and wire fraud and aggravated identity theft, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

A grand jury returned a 16-count indictment April 25, 2018, against Tonya Lynn Adkism. She was taken into custody today and is expected to make her initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dena Palermo at 10:00 a.m.

According to the indictment, Robert Meachem - a former professional football player - hired Adkism in June 2010 to manage his finances. During her employment, Adkism fraudulently acquired signatory authority over the victim’s corporate accounts and forged his signature on checks drawn on his personal accounts, according to the charges. As a result of her scheme, Adkism allegedly stole more than $1 million from Meachem.

If convicted, Adkism faces up to 20 years in prison for mail fraud and each of the two counts of wire fraud. She also faces two years in prison for each of the five counts of aggravated identity theft which must be served consecutively to the other sentences. Each of these charges also carries a possible $250,000 maximum fine. In addition, Adkism faces up to 30 years in prison and a possible $1 million maximum fine for each of the eight counts of bank fraud.

The FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin R. Martin is prosecuting the case.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.

Financial Fraud
Updated May 3, 2018