White male, middle class, middle manager – fraudster!
Middle-aged senior company executives who have been working for a long time are the type most likely to commit corporate fraud and to get away with it the longest, according to a report from KPMG.
The international KPMG Forensic study, which looked at 360 company fraud cases around the world, discovered that white-collar company fraudsters often commit more than 20 crimes before being caught.
Finance departments are the most prone to fraud, with the perpetrators’ seniority allowing them to get away with their misdemeanours for a considerable period of time.
Eric (not his real name), who once worked at an electrical equipment suppliersm in London, used just this tactic. “I was in charge of leasing out electrical equipment, like generators, to builders across the South East,” he said.
“I dealt with, and generated, literally thousands of invoices a week and after a while the temptation to ‘fabricate’ some became too great, especially as my actual official wages were dreadfully low for the industry.
“As I was also in charge of purchase ledger, and prepared the cheque runs myself, I made sure certain invoices from certain companies that did not exist were loaded up and paid into accounts I had set up myself.”
He concluded: “I got away with it for seven years and made about £350,000. When I was caught, the judge exercised leniency as I wasn’t a well man. I don’t care what anyone thinks of my behaviour – it’s just what happened.”