BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A man from Berkshire County was sentenced in connection with a scheme to defraud a Massachusetts-based company by falsifying invoices.
According to the Department of Justice in Boston, 49-year-old Brian Halpern of Florida, Mass. was sentenced to time served (one day in prison) and three years of supervised release with the first 18 months to be served in home confinement. Halpern was also ordered to pay forfeiture in the amount of $1,516,186 and restitution in the amount of $3,032,272.
Halpern is the third person sentenced in connection with the conspiracy. Keith Smedley was sentenced to three years in prison and one year of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution of $1,548,467 and forfeiture of $500,000. Richard Ritz was sentenced to 21 months in prison and two years of supervised release.
From 1998 to 2019, the three were defrauded a uniform-supply company by causing the company to pay fake invoices for products that were not actually delivered, and by diverting other products that they re-sold for their own benefit. They also created a fake supply company and caused the uniform-supply company to pay more than $3 million in fraudulent invoices for purported products that they knew would never be delivered or used.
Halpern pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, wire fraud and money laundering on August 12, 2021.