Absolutely Corrupt

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Corruption occurs when someone abandons ethical standards in order to commit an illegal or immoral act for personal gain. Fraud always involves corruption. It is a selfish and dishonest act carried out at the expense of others. The Montgomery Advertiser reports on a story about a corrupt man in Montgomery, who used his authority as a mail carrier to steal more than 100 debit cards from mailboxes along his delivery route. (Not even rain, nor sleet nor snow could keep this fraudster from taking what was not his.)

The story details that the postal carrier was recruited by a theft ring that carried out a stolen identity tax refund fraud conspiracy. The mailman provided addresses from his Montgomery delivery route in exchange for cash. The co-conspirators used these identities to file false tax returns from many locations around Montgomery and Birmingham, including houses and hotels. The mailman then stole more than 100 debit cards loaded with fraudulent tax refunds that had been mailed to recipients along his delivery route. (It is illegal to tamper with mail that is not addressed to you. Shouldn’t he know that?)

This corrupt post man was sentenced to 111 months in prison – that’s more than nine years – plus three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $82,791 in restitution for his part in the scheme.

The fraudster used his power as a mailman to participate in corruption and in return, he will absolutely be paying for his crime. He will have plenty of time in jail to write apology notes to all of his former customers. Let’s hope he remembers to take a roll of stamps.

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on the article titled, ”Former Montgomery Mail Carrier Sentenced to More Than 9 Years,” written by Rick Harmon and published in the Montgomery Adviser on October 31, 2013.

MONTGOMERY – Vernon Harrison, a U.S. Postal Service mail carrier in Montgomery, was sentenced to more than nine years in prison, three years supervised release and to pay $82,791 in restitution for his role in a stolen identity refund fraud scheme.

Harrison was convicted of conspiracy to file false claims, as well as numerous counts of mail fraud, aggravated identity theft, and embezzlement from the mail following a July 3, 2013, jury trial in Montgomery’s U.S. Middle District of Alabama.

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Larry Benson
Larry Benson is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances for Revenue Discovery and Recovery at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. In this role, Benson is responsible for developing partnerships for the tax and revenue and child support enforcement verticals. He focuses on embedded companies that have a need for third-party analytics to enhance their current offerings.