Monday, December 29, 2014

Ohio Man Sentenced In $2.9 Million Embezzlement Case; Theft Spanned A 16 Year Period

From the Morning Journal on 12/24/2014:

A Sheffield Lake man was sentenced Dec. 23 to nearly six years behind bars after his conviction for embezzling $2.9 million from a health insurance company he had worked for.

According to court documents filed with the U.S. District Court in Cleveland, Joseph Satava III, 69, was sentenced to five years and 10 months in federal prison on one count of theft or embezzlement in connection with health care. Satava pleaded guilty Oct. 22.

In addition to his prison sentence, Satava was ordered to serve three years of probation post-release and to pay $2.9 million in restitution.

According to a previous news release from the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, Satava embezzled the money from Medical Mutual over 16 years, from August 1997 to November 2013.
Satava, who started working for the company in 1971, had the “authority and managerial discretion” to request and approve checks in amounts up to $5,000 while he served as manager of credit and collections for 20 years, according to the release.
During this time, he created reimbursement checks he could embezzle, steal and convert for his own personal use, the release adds.
The release also stated that Satava reviewed weekly printouts of the company’s accounts receivable trial balance statements and would identify new companies who signed contracts for insurance coverage. With the information he concluded, Satava would select between two and four companies from this printout that made binder payments under $5,000 and create a reimbursement check in the exact amount of each respective customer check submitted to the company.
To conceal his crimes, Satava charged the checks to an account that handled several billions of dollars of revenue each year. Satava would then negotiate the check by forging the name of the payee appearing on the reimbursement check and countersigned his own name beneath the forged one.
He used ATMs to deposit the checks into his own personal bank account to avoid scrutiny from bank officials, the release said.
Satava was believed to have forged, countersigned and deposited at least 1,382 reimbursement checks while at Medical Mutual.

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