Oklahoma Woman Pleads Guilty to Making a False Statement to a Financial Institution as Part of CARES Act Fraud Scheme
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – SUSAN MICHELLE TYSON, 51, of Yukon, Oklahoma, has been sentenced to 36 months in federal prison for stealing $467,352.43 from the Oklahoma Operating Engineers Welfare Plan, announced Robert J. Troester, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma.
According to charges filed on June 12, 2017, Tyson worked as a bookkeeper in Oklahoma City for Zenith American Solutions, Inc., a company that managed assets owned by the Oklahoma Operating Engineers Welfare Plan. This Plan provided health and welfare benefits to participants whose employers contributed money under collective bargaining agreements with Local Union 627 of the International Union of Operating Engineers. Between July 2014 and January 2017, Tyson used her position to make 33 transfers, totaling $467,352.43, from the Plan’s bank account to her personal bank accounts. She also submitted duplicate invoices from Plan vendors SavRX and CVS CareMark to hide her fraud.
Tyson pleaded guilty to these charges on June 26, 2017.
Today Chief U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton sentenced Tyson to 36 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Tyson was also order to pay full restitution. At today’s hearing, the court noted that Tyson’s fraud against the Plan was similar to a prior embezzlement case against her, which resulted in a 2000 conviction in Oklahoma City federal court. The court also considered the fact that Tyson stole from a third employer, which came to light during the 2000 investigation. Furthermore, the court noted that her dishonest behavior when interacting with the U.S. Probation Office in this case, which resulted in her incarceration pending sentencing, demonstrated her lack of respect for the law.
This case is the result of an investigation by the Oklahoma City Economic and Identity Crimes Task Force, which includes the United States Secret Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, IRS–Criminal Investigations, Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, the Oklahoma City Police Department, the Edmond Police Department, the Moore Police Department, and the Norman Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brandon Hale and William E. Farrior prosecuted the case.