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Woman charged with embezzlement from Make-a-Wish

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2021 | White-Collar Crimes |

It may be difficult for someone accused of a crime to get a fair trial when the court of public opinion has already rendered its verdict. For example, alleged wrongdoing involving children or animals may face the negative outcry of those who do not have all the evidence or know all the facts. Such may be the case for a woman in another state who is facing charges of embezzlement from the MakeaWish Foundation. 

With chapters nationwide, the MakeaWish Foundation fulfills the wishes of thousands of children who are suffering from serious and terminal illnesses. The CEO of the state’s chapter earns about $140,000 a year. The most recently appointed CEO was on the job only two months when she allegedly paid herself a bonus of $10,000 from the chapter’s $4 million budget. Investigators say that over the course of the next year, the woman misappropriated over $23,000. 

Where did the money go? 

The woman’s own daughter once received a trip to Disney World after having brain surgery prior to the organization hiring the woman as its CEO. Officials accuse her of using a Make-a-Wish charge card to make over 80 purchases of undisclosed personal items. They say she made no attempt to repay the money.  

With these accusations against her, which she vehemently denies, the woman now faces two charges of first-degree theft and a charge of unauthorized use of a credit card. Each charge is a felony carrying a possible sentence of 10 years in prison if a court convicts her. However, anyone in Florida or elsewhere who is facing similar embezzlement charges has the right to present a defense in court to contest the formal accusations.