Press Release: Richard Doren Charged with Stealing More Than $1.1 Million From Two Clients’ Estates
Who: Richard Doren, the defendant, who worked at an accounting firm.
What: Doren was charged by the Manhattan District Attorney with two counts of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a C felony, and five counts of Repeated Failure to File Personal Income and Earnings Tax, an E felony.
Grand Larceny in the Second Degree is punishable by up to five to fifteen years in prison, and the E felony is punishable by up to one to three years in prison. Neither of these crimes have mandatory minimum sentences, unless the individual has a previous criminal history that would result in a mandatory minimum prison sentence. That means Doren could theoretically receive a non-prison sentence depending on the judge’s discretion and sentencing guidelines.
Where: New York, New York.
When: The crimes allegedly happened between about October 2009 and December 2015. His indictment was announced on May 18, 2016.
Why: Doren allegedly withdrew funds from the accounting firm’s two clients’ estates for his personal use, totaling more than $1.1 million.
How: Doren worked at an accounting firm for over 20 years before he committed these alleged acts. When the accountant he worked for became ill about 10 to 15 years ago, he delegated more responsibilities to Doren.
Among these responsibilities included Doren’s responsibility to manage the estates of two deceased clients who fled Berlin shortly after World War II. Doren was to administer the estates by locating their next of kin, which was a lengthy international search, as many of the clients’ family passed away in the Holocaust.
Doren managed the accounts, including keeping track of expenses relating to the search for the clients’ next of kin. Doren was the only person who reviewed bank statements for these clients.
Doren made regular withdrawals from one account in about a six-year period, totaling almost $700,000, until the account was drained, and then proceeded to withdraw funds from the second account in a two-year period, totaling over $400,000.
Doren used these funds for his own personal use, including paying off a mortgage and he and his wife’s credit card bills.
Doren never reported these funds on his New York State personal income tax return, resulting in the Repeated Failure to File Personal Income and Earnings Tax charges.
Doren was caught when the bank that held both of the estates’ accounts froze one because of suspicious activity. According to authorities, Doren has not repaid any of the money he stole.