Two plead guilty in Sommet Group fraud scheme - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Two plead guilty in Sommet Group fraud scheme

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Two defendants pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to their alleged involvement in a multi-million-dollar fraud scheme by Sommet Group, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced.

In a plea agreement, Marsha Whitfield, 39, of Franklin, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy.

D. Edwin Todd, 68, also of Franklin, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy.

Todd was a co-owner of Sommet, a company which collected the gross payroll funds from other businesses and pledged to then allocate and distribute the funds in the appropriate amounts to state and federal taxing authorities, insurance plans, 401(k) plans and client employees' paychecks.

Whitfield was vice president of Sommet's payroll department and admitted in the plea agreement that she and Todd would instead divert their clients' funds to personal use.

Todd faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, while Whitfield faces up to 25 years in prison and a $500,000 fine.

A third defendant, L. Brian Whitfield, is scheduled for trial in January.

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