Due Diligence

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

In a story that shows the importance of due diligence background checks when hiring workers, a woman in North Carolina was found to have embezzled more than $1.35 million from three different employers over the course of nearly ten years, according to a news report from The Charlotte Observer that was posted on Yahoo News.

The Charlotte Observer reported that the 41-year-old Belmont woman pleaded guilty to stealing from her employer for the third time in less than a decade. According to the federal charges filed in June 2021, the woman embezzled $550,000 from a Rock Hill development company that had hired her as a chief financial officer (CFO).

In 2012, the woman embezzled more than $800,000 from a motorcycle dealer in Kings Mountain where she worked as a senior accountant. In July 2020, she was charged with issuing $22,000 worth of checks to herself from a Charlotte-based company that hired her as a comptroller. Altogether, she stole more than $1.35 million.

The article “Holy background check, Batman: N.C. woman embezzles for third time. Total take: $1.35m” asked the obvious question: “Why do people keep hiring her to take care of their money?” The article stated that “court documents don’t explain how she kept getting hired for senior financial positions, given her criminal history.”

Attorney Lester Rosen, founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of leading global background check provider Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), explains that embezzlement “is an equal opportunity crime” that affects employers of all sizes in his comprehensive guide to background checks called “The Safe Hiring Manual.”

“Embezzlement typically occurs when there is a combination of motive, opportunity, and means,” Rosen writes in his book. “There is no one profile of an embezzler. Embezzlers can be young or old, male or female, well-educated or high school dropouts. Disguised as perfect employees, embezzlers are very difficult to detect.”

Rosen has also written a complimentary white paper titled “Background Checks and Reducing the Insider Threat: Strategies Before and After Hiring” to show employers how to reduce post-hire risks and insider threats to their organizations originating from employees, former employees, contractors, or business associates.

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – which was ranked the #1 screening firm by HRO Today – offers employers post-hire background checks to reduce insider threats since due diligence and risk do not stop after the pre-employment background check. To learn more about ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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