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A Wegmans Employee Allegedly Stole Over $500,000 from the Company Alicia Torres pleaded guilty to crimes carried out over nine years while working at Wegmans in Webster, New York.

By Madeline Garfinkle

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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Alicia Torres, 47, pleaded guilty to wire fraud last week in a scheme that resulted in her stealing over half a million dollars from her former employer, Wegmans.

For nearly nine years, Torres processed about 350 fraudulent credit card refunds through Wegmans' pharmacy and pocketed the refund amounts to her own bank account. Between 2014 and February 2023, Torres' scam resulted in her receiving $568,021.69 of "fictitious" refunds.

Torres worked at a Wegmans location in Webster, New York for about 27 years. Her charge of wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison along with a $250,000 fine. Torres' sentencing is scheduled for September 11.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Torres decided on the refund amount based on actual refunds she had witnessed customers receive in the past. She then "tricked" the pharmacist on duty to authorize the refund requests and, once approved, transfer the funds to her personal account by swiping her card into Wegmans' payment system.

Torres also stole $10,922.17 from Wegmans with fraudulent gift card refunds between 2020 and February 2023.

Related: A Retired Teacher and Her Daughter Were Scammed Out of $200,000 Over Email: 'I'm 69 Years Old and Now I'm Broke and Homeless'

According to data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, employee theft costs businesses $50 billion a year, and according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, the average cost per fraud case by employees is $1,509,000.

Related: Employee Theft is More Common Than You Think. This is What You Should Do About It.

Madeline Garfinkle

News Writer

Madeline Garfinkle is a News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. She is a graduate from Syracuse University, and received an MFA from Columbia University. 

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