Mitchell E. Green, a 44-year-old resident of Westport, Connecticut, confessed to a scheme defrauding a New Jersey-based liquor company and its internationally recognized owner of $2.19 million.
Green was responsible for causing them to overpay for champagne and cognac and subsequently pocketing kickbacks from the increased prices.
U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger stated that Green manipulated secret side agreements to hike up costs instead of negotiating the best possible deals for his employer.
This deceitful maneuver enabled him to gather millions in kickbacks. Sellinger emphasized the importance of trustworthiness in business and assured that perpetrators of such frauds would face the consequences.
FBI-Newark's James E. Dennehy also commented on the case, noting that such fraudulent gains never truly offer easy money.
Court documents revealed that from June 2017 to February 2020, Green was employed at a Hoboken, New Jersey, liquor firm owned by a renowned music artist and entrepreneur.
He covertly struck deals with two French distilleries, ensuring that they paid him commissions for every bottle purchased by his employer. This kickback cost was sneakily included in the bottle's price.
As a result, the company unknowingly paid $14.8 million, with Green receiving $2.19 million in concealed kickbacks.
Green now faces a potential 20-year prison term for his wire fraud actions. The fine may reach up to $250,000 or double the gross profits or losses incurred due to his deception.
Green's sentencing is set for January 23, 2024.