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Movin’ on Up: When unusual signs of wealth signal an issue

art2-4-16Numerous times over the years, ResultQuest has been called in to investigate suspected fraud on the part of an employee. In the vast majority of instances, our analysis has revealed glaring signs of newly acquired wealth that went beyond what the employee’s salary might reasonably sustain. Often the person took no precautionary measures to shield the opulence. Furthermore, there was almost never any question posed by upper management.

In one particular incident, an executive who had arrived at his new workplace from out-of-state in an old rattle-trap of a car suddenly appeared at work one day driving a custom luxury pickup. Soon thereafter he arrived in a luxury sport utility vehicle he had purchased for his wife. If someone had bothered to check at the time it would have been revealed, as our investigation later uncovered, that there were no purchase liens perfected against either vehicle. However, nobody at his workplace questioned the purchases at the time.

By the point at which auditors began to question some accounts payable over which the executive had authority, he had embezzled several millions of dollars. ResultQuest discovered that, aside from the two vehicles, the executive made a cash purchase of a sprawling mansion, which was under renovation and being filled with lavish furnishings at the time that the fraud was detected.

Sudden demonstrations of newly acquired wealth or other signs of living beyond one’s financial means should raise red flags. You can rely on the seasoned professionals of ResultQuest to help you craft a discreet, nonintrusive examination to determine if there are indications of fraudulent activities. Call us at 713-781-9040 to arrange a complimentary initial assessment.