It's easy to forget sometimes that GameStop
is a major company, with hundreds of franchise locations all across the country that pulls in a substantial amount of money annually. So substantial, in fact, that one executive managed to embezzle nearly $2 million from GameStop, pleading guilty in a Federal Court hearing.
Frank Christopher Olivera was a vice president with the company in corporate communications
, which put him in a position to be able to access the company checkbook. And access said checkbook he did, sending a series of checks to a company called Cloud Communications, which submitted invoices
on a regular basis for vendor services.
Of course, given that Cloud Communications appeared to do nothing but receive checks from GameStop, and further given that Cloud Communications seemed to be wholly owned, operated, and staffed by Frank Christopher Olivera, it got suspicious after a while.
Olivera reportedly ran the scam from July of 2009 clear through to April 2011, and plead guilty to the charges. Olivera faces a sentence of up to 20 years in prison backed up by a $250,000 fine.
It's a downright shame and it just goes to prove that embezzlement can happen anywhere. Some might respond that better cash controls here might better serve, and they might have, but it underscores the point that whoever's handling the checkbook needs to ensure transparent practices, and also to operate with maximum accountability.
Chances are GameStop learned a valuable lesson from all this, but it remains to be seen just how far they will go with it.