Former Tyson Benefits Manager Sentenced to 28 Months in Federal Prison

January 8, 2016

A former benefits plan manager for Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson Inc. has been sentenced to 28 months in prison for defrauding the company of more than $550,000.

Acting U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, Kenneth Elser, announced that under a plea agreement, Brenda Blair of Gentry, Ark., was sentenced on one count of wire fraud. Her federal prison sentence will be followed by two years of supervised release.

She was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $551,343.52.

According to a plea agreement, Blair had worked for Tyson for more than 25 years. As the special benefits plan manager, Blair managed contributions into and handled administrative duties related to the Tyson Foods Inc. Pre-65 Retiree Health Insurance Benefit Plan.

From June 2005 to September 2014, Blair devised and implemented a scheme to defraud money from Tyson Inc. by generating fraudulent payments in the name of actual participants in the Pre-65 Retiree Health Insurance Benefits Plan and directing these payments to her own bank accounts.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) – Criminal Investigation Division, and the Department of Labor. Assistant United States Attorney Kimberly N. Davis prosecuted the case for the United States.

Source: Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas


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Latest Comments

  • January 11, 2016 at 4:02 pm
    Agent says:
    No matter how smart a thief thinks they are, they eventually get caught. She worked for them 25 years and then did this???? I would think she made a very good salary in her ... read more
  • January 11, 2016 at 8:56 am
    Fair Playing Field says:
    The article says the case was investigated by the FBI and IRS, so Blair will no doubt be subject to taxes on the money stolen. I saw in another article she was ordered to pay ... read more
  • January 8, 2016 at 1:56 pm
    steve says:
    I am always amazed by the "slap on the wrist" penalties in these cases. she is getting away with $20k a month, in addition to her room and board, for the next 2+ years. I will... read more
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