$800K embezzlement scheme

An Indiana woman has been sentenced for allegedly stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her trucking company employer.

Forty-two year old Lucy Owens was sentenced to 57 months in prison and a year of supervised release, according to a September 11 news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office Northern District of Indiana. Owens was also ordered to pay $820,483.66 in restitution.

In May 2018, Owens was convicted on 7 counts of wire fraud in connection with a five year long embezzlement scheme.

According to authorities, between 2010 and 2015, Owens took part in two different fraud schemes that diverted over $800,000 from the Hammond, Indiana-based trucking company she worked for.

From the news release:

In one scheme, Owens used her position as the company’s accounts payable clerk to fraudulently pay over $460,000 in personal credit card bills from the company’s bank account. In the second scheme, Owens used her position as the administrator of the company’s diesel fuel card program to help two individuals obtain over $330,000 in unauthorized cash advances at truck stops. One of the individuals, Kirk Stroh, also from Hobart, Indiana, was a truck driver for a rival trucking company.  Owens helped Stroh obtain over $290,000 in fraudulent cash advances at a truck stop in Lake Station, Indiana, in increments of $800 per day.  Stroh, a co-defendant in the case, who previously pled guilty, split the proceeds with Owens.  In addition to paying her personal credit card debt funds stolen from her employer, Owens used her portion of the stolen funds to pay for frequent family vacations, dining, clothing, jewelry, home improvements, and other items. 

“The great work of the Hammond Police Department has brought this case to a successful conclusion with an order of restitution and significant prison time,” said U.S. Attorney Thomas L. Kirsch II.  “The U.S. Attorney’s Office and law enforcement partners will continue to hold people accountable for their actions when they choose to take advantage of others.”

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