Niagara Falls Woman Who Allegedly Stole Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars From Investment Firm Clients Indicted On Fraud And Identity Theft Charges
CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051
BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that a federal grand jury has returned a 23-count indictment charging Jennifer Campbell, 47, of Niagara Falls, NY, with wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. The charges carry a minimum penalty of two years in prison, a maximum penalty of 20 years, and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas A. C. Penrose, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment, Campbell was employed as the Office Manager and Chief Compliance Officer at an investment advisory firm based in Buffalo, NY, with access to client accounts. Between November 2018, and May 2021, Campbell used this access to steal over $500,000 from several clients and from the firm itself. Campbell wrote checks from client accounts, forging signatures of either the client or a principal at the firm, and then deposited the checks into her own personal account. Campbell also took steps to conceal the thefts. For instance, she sent a victim a falsified account statement showing a balance of approximately $148,000, when in fact the account had a balance of only $93. In another instance, Campbell took funds from a client and transferred the funds to the bank account of one of a previous victim, who believed that the funds she received were a distribution from her account.
In addition, Campbell diverted emails received by firm principals from anti-money laundering and financial crimes personnel at the firm’s broker-dealer, who had begun to raise questions about some of the transactions that Campbell had engaged in. To put off these inquiries, Campbell sent several emails using the email account of a firm principal making false statements and submitted fake documentation in an effort to make the transactions appear legitimate.
The defendant was arraigned today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeremiah J. McCarthy and was released on conditions.
The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia, and the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, under the direction of Thomas Fattorusso, Special Agent-in-Charge.
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
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