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