ATLANTA – Janet West, a former Cox Communications vice president, has pleaded guilty to her part in an embezzlement scheme that cost the company millions of dollars.
“West defrauded a company that trusted her judgment as a vice president,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak. “The temptation to steal via a credit card may be appealing. This defendant wishes she had thought twice about the potential outcome.”
“This case should be an example that no matter your position, you cannot profit illegally or take advantage of your status in the company you were entrusted to work for,” said David J. LeValley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “The FBI is committed to making cases like this a strong deterrent to greed’s temptation.”
According to U.S. Attorney Pak, the charges and other information presented in court: West was Cox Communications’ Vice President in charge of Nationwide Field Marketing for the company’s plan to bring Gigabit speed connections to markets throughout the United States. Beginning in 2011, West began directing her assistant to make payments on the assistant’s corporate credit card to a third party company for supposed marketing services. In reality, a significant portion of these services never actually occurred and the majority of these funds were actually secretly being transferred back to the defendant. West repeatedly signed false conflict of interest certifications with Cox Communications that failed to disclose the payments she was making to herself.
West caused Cox to make payments totaling $2.4 million to this third party, most of which was then sent back to her. The defendant then used the embezzled funds for her own personal benefit, including making payments on two houses she owned in Arizona. Pursuant to the plea agreement in this case, West agreed to forfeit her interests in both of these houses.
Sentencing for Janet West, 47, of Paradise Valley, Arizona, is scheduled for March 12, 2018, at 10:30 a.m., before U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas J. Krepp and Kelly K. Connors are prosecuting the case.
For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.