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Posted on: December 6, 2021

Former Pharmaceutical Company Employee Indicted for Allegedly Embezzling More than $1.38 Million

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Office manager Maria Porras allegedly stole money between 2015 and 2020

MINEOLA, N.Y. – Acting Nassau County District Attorney Joyce A. Smith announced that a Massapequa Park woman who worked as an office manager for a pharmaceutical company was indicted for allegedly stealing more than $1.38 million from three affiliated businesses. 

Maria Porras, 32, of Massapequa Park, was arraigned on Monday, December 6, 2021, before Judge Felice Muraca on three counts of grand larceny in the second degree (a C felony), four counts of criminal tax fraud in the third degree (a D felony) and four counts of offering a false instrument for filing (an E felony.) The defendant was released on her own recognizance and is due back in court January 13, 2022. If convicted of the top charge, the defendant faces a potential maximum of five to 15 years in prison.  

“This defendant allegedly abused her position as an office manager at RXUSA, using her access to the company’s bookkeeping system – and the accounts of two other affiliate companies – to deposit checks into her personal account and line her pockets with more than a million dollars of the companies’ funds over five years,” said Acting DA Smith. “Unscrupulous employees who choose greed over principle will be held accountable by this office for their actions.”

New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Acting Commissioner Amanda Hiller said, “Taxpayers who fraudulently evade their tax obligations deprive the state and our communities critical funding for vital public programs and services. We’ll continue to work with all levels of law enforcement, including the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office, to ensure those who illegally profit at the expense of others are held accountable.”

Acting DA Smith said that, according to the indictment, from 2015 to 2019, the defendant was employed as an office manager for RXUSA, a pharmaceutical company in Port Washington. As part of her duties, Porras had access to the RXUSA’s bookkeeping system, which enabled her to generate checks written from RXUSA’s account and from the accounts of two other affiliated companies, Eveready Wholesale Drugs, Inc., and PBM America Inc. The owner of the companies, Robert Drucker, died in March 2017 and the companies closed in December 2019. 

On November 11, 2020, the defendant was arrested by the Port Washington Police Department after it was discovered that she allegedly deposited checks from RXUSA written out to the company’s vendors and diverted incoming checks into her personal account. Upon further investigation, it was revealed that the defendant had allegedly embezzled $1,384,487.71 from the three companies between 2015 and 2020. 

The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance also initiated an investigation, which revealed that the defendant failed to report the income Porras had allegedly stolen on her personal tax returns and failed to pay the full taxes she owed from 2016 to 2019. 

Senior Assistant District Attorney Erica Zimmerman of the Financial Crimes Bureau is prosecuting this case. Scott Gross, Esq. represents the defendant.

The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty. 

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