A Long Island accountant will face more than a decade behind bars after he was arrested for allegedly stealing more than $320,000 from a pair of clients.
Baldwin resident Francisco Esquivel, 65, the owner of Lore Franc, Inc. in Hempstead, was arraigned on Thursday, Aug. 20 for allegedly embezzling $327,499 from two local business owners between 2012 and 2017.
District Attorney Madeline Singas said that Esquivel’s victims hired his company to pay their quarterly taxes, Workers Compensation Insurance, and manage payrolls.
Esquivel’s first victim was approached by an employee of Lore Frank in 2015, who asked him if he had reviewed his bank accounts. The victim discovered that on several occasions from 2012 until 2015, Esquivel allegedly made unauthorized cash withdrawals, wrote unauthorized checks to himself or his company, and in some instances wired money to an account he holds in Colombia.
In total, Esquivel allegedly stole $295,257 from his first victim.
The second victim realized there was a problem in 2018 after receiving notice from the IRS, which claimed he owed more than $60,000 in back taxes dating back to 2015.
Further investigation by the business owner found that there were five unauthorized cash withdrawals ranging between $2,480 and $9,308 dating back to May 2015.
It is alleged that Esquivel stole a total of $35,242 from his second victim. When approached by the victim, Esquivel cut him a check, which bounced, Singas said.
Singas made note that it is unclear what Esquivel spent the embezzled money on.
Esquivel, 65, was charged with second-degree grand larceny and four counts of third-degree grand larceny, all felonies. Following his arraignment, Esquivel was released and scheduled to appear back in court on Wednesday, Oct. 14.
If convicted, Esquivel faces a term of between five and 15 years in prison.
“This defendant, an accountant, was hired by to handle their taxes and payrolls for two clients, but instead allegedly stole more than $320,000 from local businesses,” Singas said. “His alleged conduct is especially egregious because not only did he abuse the trust of his clients, but those clients still must pay taxes for the years they were defrauded.”
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