The former head of PR at video game retailer GameStop embezzled nearly $2 million before the company found out and fired him.
Chris Olivera (pictured, via LinkedIn) admitted to a Texas court last week
that he was guilty of a fairly simple embezzlement scheme, in which he set up a fake company and effectively paid himself out of GameStop's coffers for services it claimed to provide.
Here's how it worked: Olivera incorporated a fake company called "Cloud Communications LLC" and made up a fake employee, "Jennifer Miller." Olivera would then invoice GameStop (as Miller) for services that "Cloud Communications" provided. As the vice president of corporate communications and public affairs at GameStop, Olivera simply approved the invoices himself and had checks made out to his fake company.
Between around July 2009 and around April 2011, Olivera managed to cash $1,965,900 worth of false invoices before, apparently, GameStop figured out what was going on. Though the company did not specifically say why, it admitted to Kotaku
that it fired Olivera last year.
It wasn't actually GameStop that took him to court, it was the government. Olivera plead guilty to one count of mail fraud, as he used the United States Postal Service to deliver the false invoices. Mail fraud carries with it a $250,000 fine and a maximum of 20 years of prison time.
According to Olivera's LinkedIn profile, he has been an executive at Sony since June, 2011, currently claiming to be its senior vice president of corporate affairs. We were unable to verify with Sony if this is still the case.