Funeral Home Worker Accused Of Embezzling $500,000 - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Funeral Home Worker Accused Of Embezzling $500,000

A mid-Michigan funeral home worker faces 27 criminal charges after the Attorney General accused him of embezzling $500,000 from customers and insurance companies.

Detectives and prosecutors say from 2008 through 2011, Marti James Schrauben created false death certificates and sent them to insurance companies to get paid for them. They also say he took money for pre-paid funerals from customers - and instead of putting the money into escrow accounts, he used it for himself.

Deputies arrested him this morning.

Schrauben, who is from Portland, worked for the Schrauben-Lehman Funeral Home in Ionia. The sheriff's department there started investigating after the funeral home owner filed a complaint. The attorney general says Schrauben had previously sold his interest in the funeral home and was only an employee during the time in question.

"Conscientious citizens who purchase funeral services should not have to worry about whether the money will be there when loved ones need it most," said Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette in a press release. "We will continue to work with local law enforcement to hold accountable anyone who abuses their position of trust for personal enrichment."

The 27 charges against Schrauben include:

· One count of Criminal Enterprises - Racketeering Proceeds, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a $100,000 fine

· One count of Conducting Criminal Enterprises, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a $100,000 fine

· One count of Maintaining Criminal Enterprises, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a $100,000 fine

· Two counts of Embezzlement, $100,000 Or More, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine up to $50,000 or three times the amount embezzled, whichever is greater

· One count of Embezzlement, $50,000 - $100,000, a felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison and/or a fine up to $25,000 or three times the amount embezzled, whichever is greater.

· Five counts of Embezzlement, $1,000 - $20,000, a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine

· Eight counts of Uttering and Publishing, a felony punishable by up to 14 years in prison

· Four counts of Forgery, a felony punishable by up to 14 years in prison

· Four counts of Insurance Fraud, a felony punishable by up to 4 years in prison and a $50,000 fine

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