EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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November 11, 2012

FBI charges man with embezzling over $100K

FBI arrests former mortgage company VP

NORTH ANDOVER – A local man has been charged by the FBI with embezzling more than $100,000 from a mortgage company where he used to be a vice president.

Francis X. Sullivan, 44, of 65 Court St., was arrested by FBI agents at his home last week. He was booked at the North Andover police station. Sullivan was released on a $25,000 bond. Sullivan wrote checks to himself from business accounts of Potomac Realty Capital, a Needham mortgage lending company where he was vice president of finance until December 2010, according to an affidavit filed by FBI Special Agent Lisa Baillargeon.

Sullivan worked for Potomac Realty Capital from March 29 until Dec. 6, 2010, when his employment was terminated, according to Baillargeon. After his termination, PRC employees discovered bank statements for several of the company’s accounts hidden in a box in Sullivan’s former office.

Reconciliation of PRC’s records with the bank statements revealed Sullivan had made unauthorized withdrawals from the accounts, Baillargeon wrote. Sullivan confessed to former colleagues he had deposited checks intended for PRC vendors into his own personal account at Sovereign Bank, Baillargeon alleged.

PRC concluded Sullivan made a total of $112,385 in unauthorized withdrawals from the company’s accounts. He also deposited a bimonthly check for $1,435 that was payable to the widow of a PRC employee into his own account, according to the affidavit.

The widow told investigators one of her bimonthly pension payments was missing.

Sullivan is charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office with defrauding a financial institution and transporting stolen money across a state line. In November 2010, he took a $5,500 check issued against a PRC account to Plaistow, N.H., where he deposited part of the money in his own account at Sovereign Bank and took the rest as cash, according to the affidavit.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has 30 days to seek an indictment against Sullivan, according to spokeswoman Christina Sterling. The date of his arraignment before the U.S. District Court in Boston has not been set, Sterling said.

No one else at PRC has been charged in the case, she said.

“He isn’t here,” said a man who answered the door at 65 Court St. on Wednesday night when a reporter went seeking comment.

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