Former AEP employee pleads guilty to wire fraud and tax charges
ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ/US Attorney’s Office Release) - A former American Electric Power employee has pleaded guilty to wire fraud and filing false tax returns.
Court documents indicate Gregory Holland, 63 of Roanoke, was employed at AEP from 1982 until January 2018, much of that time in the credit department. He was responsible for managing AEP’s interests during customer bankruptcies, filing claims, and reducing debts.
Acting US Attorney Daniel Bubar says Holland admitted that in 2001 he opened a personal checking account using AEP’s name and address, without anyone else at the company knowing about it. The next year, he began depositing checks into this account, written on behalf of AEP customers, made payable to AEP. Between May 2002 and January 2018, Holland admitted to depositing more than 300 checks into this account, according to Bubar. All the money he deposited into this account belonged to AEP, but he used the money from the account for personal expenses such as dues at the Roanoke Country Club, car payments, and clothing purchase, among other things.
Holland did not report any of this additional income when filing tax returns between 2011 and 2017.
In all, Bubar says, it is estimated Holland stole $1.6 million dollars from AEP. The court will determine the exact amount of loss at Holland’s sentencing hearing in September.
Holland faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.
Holland’s attorney, John Lichtenstien, sent a statement on Holland’s behalf:
“Mr. Holland has taken responsibility in this matter and has communicated cooperatively with the government in these regards. He has lived a life of substantial achievement and service to others and is committed to handling this responsibly moving forward.”
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