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Westfield woman charged with embezzling thousands of dollars from health care agency

STAFF REPORTS

BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Alicia Raynor, 40, of Westfield, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with embezzlement. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John D. Fabian, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, in 2012, the defendant was hired by Compassion at Home, Inc. as the Business Manager. Between November 2012 and August 2015, the defendant had access to the payroll processing service of Compassion at Home, which was used to deposit pay directly into employee bank accounts. Raynor used the service to divert funds from the company's bank account to accounts under her control. In August 2015, the President of the company terminated the defendant for using company funds to pay personal expenses.

In the middle of 2016, the President noticed that, although Raynor was no longer employed by Compassion at Home and was no longer entitled to any payments from the company, numerous wire transfers were being sent from a company bank account to the defendant. Realizing that Raynor had maintained access to the payroll processing service, the President eliminated the defendant's access to the payment processing service, which ceased the wire transfers to Raynor.

Between September 24, 2015, and June 30, 2016, Alicia Raynor received 139 electronic funds transfers from the company bank account into bank accounts under her control. The transfers involved variations of the defendant's name, bank names, credit card names, and names of employees of Compassion at Home. Raynor is accused of embezzling a total of $227,000.                                 

The defendant made an initial appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael J. Roemer and was released on conditions.

The complaint is the culmination of an investigation by Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Gary Loeffert, and the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, under the direction of James D. Robnett, Special Agent in Charge, New York Field Office.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.