While many companies prefer not to disclose that they have been a victim of while collar crime, this dastardly form of criminality is known to cost American businesses billions, if not trillions every year. Once in a while, a huge case hits the headlines, with scandals rocking entire industries or prompting the creation of new legislation to better protect the public.
To many, these white collar crime examples can seem unrelatable in their sheer scale and audacity—but within each newsreel-worthy story of vast-scale fraud, bribery, or insider trading lies a valuable lesson for even the most modest of business owners. In truth, no enterprise is immune to the threat of white collar crime. This makes learning valuable lessons and being proactive about prevention key to avoiding becoming another number in the worst kinds of statistics.
What Can We Learn from These White Collar Crime Examples?
You may be familiar with these white collar crime examples, but why not stop and look again? Within each dramatic tale lies a valuable lesson for any business or organization that is keen to safeguard against the perils of white collar crime and the painful losses, workplace investigations, and potential litigation that so often follow.
Bernie Madoff’s Story Shows Us the Vital Role of Reporting Channels
Perhaps the most famous white collar crime in all of history, Bernie Madoff’s dastardly actions introduced the term “Ponzi scheme” into the everyday American lexicon. Once a jack of all trades, Madoff managed to climb his way up to become the chairman of the NASDAQ before forging a multi-billion dollar investment firm on the back of entirely falsified trading reports.
Despite years of swirling rumor, the villain remain unscathed until one of his own sons reported him to the authorities. For Madoff, the result of that fateful flow of information was a 150-year jail sentence passed in 2009. The question is, how healthy are your enterprise’s reporting channels?
The Wirecard Scandal Demonstrates the Importance of Oversight
In another dark star among white collar crime examples, all appeared to be going fantastically for the 20-year-old German electronic payments company Wirecard. However, an unexpected audit revealed a $2 billion hole in their books.
Ultimately, CEO Markus Braun took the fall in 2020 for falsifying financial records, while his co-conspirator COO Jan Marsalek fled charges and is thought to be hiding out in Russia. The question is, how stringent are your organization’s financial oversight mechanisms?
The HealthSouth Accounting Case Shows Why Ethics Are Key in Corporate Culture
Despite the facade of a focus on wholesome well-being, HealthSouth had been attracting suspicion for its financial dealings since the 1980s. Unfortunately, behind closed doors founder Richard Scrushy had falsified billions of dollars worth of profits, engaged in bribery and mail fraud, and tragically defrauded Medicare and other federal healthcare programs. It makes us wonder, how strong is the ethical framework within your company’s corporate culture plan?
Marcus Schrenker’s Story Showcases the Power of Corporate Investigations
As alarming as all cases of white collar crime might be, there is comfort in knowing that effective corporate investigations can leave fraudsters quaking in their boots. In 2008, Indiana native Marcus Shrenker’s unethical practices as a money-grabbing investment advisor ultimately caught up with him.
An investigation ensued, and rather than face the consequences of his actions, Schrenker attempted to fake his own death by staging a plane crash and parachuting to safety. Happily, investigators saw right through the theatrics and put Schrenker behind bars. The moral of the story is that even the most cunning of criminals are no match for high-caliber corporate investigators!
Do You Require Assistance Keeping White Collar Crime at Bay?
Here at Lauth Investigations International, we take immense pride in helping corporations across the country safeguard the interests of their shareholders and employees while supporting their success and prosperity. This includes the provision of deft, swift, and effective white collar crime investigations. However, it also includes preventative strategies, such as corporate culture audits, candidate background checks, and more. Do you require assistance keeping white collar crime at bay? If so, get in touch today for a no-obligation consultation about how we can support you best.