Woman faces trial for $900K theft

The Southern Berks News - - FRONT PAGE - By Carl Hessler Jr. chessler@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Mont­coCourtNews on Twit­ter

NORRISTOWN » A Douglassville woman must an­swer to charges in Mont­gomery County Court that she em­bez­zled more than $900,000 from the East Nor­ri­ton Town­ship com­pany for which she worked as di­rec­tor of hu­man re­sources.

Chris­tine Marie Cush­man, 31, of the 700 block of Rose­wood Drive, Amity Town­ship, waived her pre­lim­i­nary hear­ing be­fore District Court Judge Ester J. Casillo on charges of theft by un­law­ful tak­ing or dis­po­si­tion, iden­tity theft and re­ceiv­ing stolen prop­erty in con­nec­tion with in­ci­dents that oc­curred be­tween Au­gust 2015 and June 2017 while she worked at High­point So­lu­tions LLC in East Nor­ri­ton.

Casillo set a Nov. 8 ar­raign­ment date for Cush­man in county court. Af­ter her ar­raign­ment, Cush­man, who is rep­re­sented by de­fense lawyer Wil­liam C. DeNardo, will be sched­uled for trial on the charges.

Cush­man, who was ar­rested Aug. 2, re­mains free on $10,000 un­se­cured bail while await­ing court ac­tion. The case is be­ing pros­e­cuted by county As­sis­tant District At­tor­ney Christo­pher Daniels.

With the charges, prose­cu­tors al­leged Cush­man stole $919,301 from her for­mer em­ployer dur­ing a scheme they char­ac­ter­ized as a breach of trust.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tion be­gan July 4, when se­nior of­fi­cials of High­point So­lu­tions con­tacted East Nor­ri­ton de­tec­tives to re­port that the busi­ness’s pay­roll com­pany un­cov­ered sus­pi­cious di­rect de­posit trans­ac­tions that were made to Cush­man’s per­sonal bank ac­count.

The sub­se­quent in­ves­ti­ga­tion de­ter­mined that Cush­man al­legedly is­sued fraud­u­lent pay­roll checks in the names of four for­mer sub­con­trac­tors who no longer did busi­ness with High­point So­lu­tions and then di­rectly de­posited them in her per­sonal bank ac­count, ac­cord­ing to court pa­pers.

Cush­man’s re­spon­si­bil­i­ties in­cluded pre­par­ing and re­view­ing the pay­roll in­for­ma­tion be­fore it was sub­mit­ted to the out­side pay­roll com­pany, au­thor­i­ties al­leged.

The 45 fraud­u­lent trans­ac­tions oc­curred be­tween Au­gust 2015 and June 2017, au­thor­i­ties al­leged.

Cush­man, ac­cord­ing to the crim­i­nal com­plaint, also took steps to con­ceal the fraud­u­lent trans­ac­tions.

Of­fi­cials said Cush­man was em­ployed by High­point So­lu­tions since July 16, 2007. Cush­man left the com­pany for a brief pe­riod of time but re­turned on July 14, 2014.

When com­pany of­fi­cials con­fronted Cush­man about the al­leged thefts she ini­tially de­nied the con­duct. How­ever, later in text mes­sages, Cush­man of­fered to re­turn $56,000 which she had

in the bank and promised to come up with a plan for re­pay­ing the re­main­ing bal­ance, ac­cord­ing to the crim­i­nal com­plaint filed by East Nor­ri­ton De­tec­tive Anthony Caso.

Dur­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, de­tec­tives ob­tained war­rants to search Cush­man’s bank ac­count. De­tec­tives al­leged bank­ing records re­vealed that af­ter the fraud­u­lent de­posits were made to Cush­man’s ac­count they were quickly uti­lized, “quite of­ten trans­ferred to other ac­counts, used to pay per­sonal debts both elec­tron­i­cally and by check,” ac­cord­ing to the crim­i­nal com­plaint.

Chris­tine M. Cush­man

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.