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Ex-Alden Shoe CFO to Plead Guilty in $30 Million Embezzlement Scheme

Richard Hajjar, the former CFO of Alden Shoe Co., has agreed to plead guilty in connection with embezzling about $30 million from the company as part of a lengthy scheme, the Massachusetts U.S. Attorney’s Office revealed today.

Hajjar agreed to plead guilty to wire fraud, unlawful monetary transactions and filing a false tax return. A plea hearing has not yet been scheduled by the court.

From at least 2011 through October 2019 — when he was terminated by the company — Hajjar embezzled money by writing checks to himself from company bank accounts and transferring funds to his personal accounts and to another individual, court documents said.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Hajjar used money to buy gifts and luxury travel for others close to him, including private flights to the Caribbean and diamond jewelry.

In addition, between approximately 2014 and 2019, Hajjar failed to report the proceeds of his embezzlement as income on his tax returns. He failed to pay about 5 million in taxes to the Internal Revenue Service, documents said.

The wire fraud charge carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, while the charge of unlawful monetary transaction provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. Filing a false tax return could mean up to three years in prison.

The revelation comes just a week after a former Nike Inc. marketing manager plead guilty to alleged wire and mail fraud. According to federal court documents filed in the United States District Court in Portland, Errol Andam faces 24 months to 37 months in prison after pleading guilty to criminal charges of wire fraud, money laundering and submitting a false mortgage application.

The plea agreement, which has now been sealed, requires Andam to pay $1.49 million in restitution to Nike and $173,172 to another company called Maplewood Mfg.

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