Episode 8: Two Case Studies on Occupational Fraud & How Internal Controls Could Have Prevented Them

Today I will be discussing two case studies of occupational fraud in vendor payments, both which were reported in the news in November and they could not be more different – One was a government entity, the other was a for-profit entity.  One perpetrated by a woman, the other by a man.  One where the payments were made by check and the other where the payments were made by ACH.  One stole thousands, the other stole millions. 

Follow along as I review what internal controls and best practices could have prevented or reduced losses.  I will also compare these two case studies to see how they stack up against the Association of Fraud Examiners (ACFE) 2018 Report to the Nation’s infographic metrics on occupational fraud.  

ACFE 2018 Report to the Nation InfoGraphic.jpg

Vendor Setup & Maintenance Additional Resources: 

  • Blog Post: “Segregation of Duties in Accounts Payable for SMBs” www.debrarrichardson.com/blog/

  • Case Study #1:  First Coast News: “St. Johns sheriff’s finance director jailed after $600,000-plus in false payments uncovered.” November 21, 2018. https://fcnews.tv/2BL2Hj0

  • Case Study #2:  USA Today: “Former Tesla employee indicted for alleged $9.3-million embezzlement scheme.”  November 9, 2018.  http://bit.ly/2BM7NvC

  • Association for Certified Fraud Examiners 2018 Report to the Nations Infographic: 

  • Tulsa Gift Card Scam:   “Tulsa police investigating after two local businesses are scammed” http://bit.ly/2BMjLoN

#stayhappy #puttingtheapinhappy #vendorsetup #acccountspayable


 Music Credit:  www.purple-planet.com


Debra R. Richardson,


Debra is an accounts payable speaker, consultant, and trainer with over 20 years of experience in AP, AR, general ledger, and financial reporting for Fortune 500 companies including Verizon, General Motors and Aramark.

For the past eight years, Debra has focused on Global Vendor Maintenance, and implemented a vendor self-registration portal for 140k+ global vendors across five Accounting Systems/ERPs. In her consultancy, she focuses on internal controls and authentication to prevent fraud in the vendor master file.