New Indictment Reduces Number of Charges For Some Accused of Stealing From Starkey

New Indictment Reduces Number of Charges For Some Accused of Stealing From Starkey Photo: Wikimedia

December 06, 2017 06:24 PM

Three of the men charged with conspiring to steal more than $20 million from Starkey Laboratories Inc. are now facing fewer criminal charges.

Former Starkey president Jerry Ruzicka and others are accused of conspiring to embezzle from Starkey and Sonion from 2006 to September of 2015. Starkey is a hearing aid manufacturer, and Sonion is a major supplier of hearing aid components.

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RELATED: Former Starkey Executive Charged in Federal Court Sues Company Over Legal Fees

Prosecutors allege the defendants used a variety of methods to steal from the companies, including controlling a complicated web of sham companies and dummy entities, awarding themselves restricted stock in Starkey's retail affiliate and embezzling from the company.

In indictments in September of 2016 and this past January, Ruzicka was charged with filing a false tax return, conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and financial transactions involving fraud proceeds. A number of those included multiple counts.

RELATED: New Charges Against 2 Former Starkey Executives

A new indictment, however, drops the total mail fraud counts he is charged with from six to four.

Former Sonion president Jeff Taylor was charged with three counts of mail fraud. That total has now dropped to one.

RELATED: Starkey Settles with 2 Former Employees who Filed Wrongful Termination Suits

Ruzicka, Taylor and former Starkey employee Larry Hagen were also charged with money laundering. But after the new indictment, those charges no longer exist.

RELATED: 5 Executives Indicted, Accused of $20 Million Fraud Against Starkey Laboratories

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