The former vice president of a Johnstown-area company that provides services for the disabled has admitted that she didn’t turn over some $2 million in employment taxes and stole from the company along with her husband, who also worked there.
Sarah Stiles, 38, and David Bachik, 52, of Northern Cambria, pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Johnstown to violations of tax, fraud and money-laundering laws involving Life Changing Support Services, which provides help for people with intellectual disabilities.
The pair waived indictment by grand jury and pleaded to what’s called an “information,” a direct charge that bypasses the grand jury process. It’s usually used when someone is cooperative with authorities.
Stiles was a vice president at the company, and her husband was a maintenance worker there.
The couple, either together or separately, perpetrated two separate schemes, according to the criminal investigation division of the IRS, the FBI, the state attorney general’s office and state police.
First, from March 2013 through December 2019, Stiles didn’t turn over more than $2 million in employment taxes to the IRS.
As vice president, she was responsible for withholding and paying over to the IRS taxes related to employees. She didn’t. In her guilty plea, she admitted to failing to turn over $21,284 for the quarter ending in December of calendar year 2019, but the IRS determined that she did the same for every quarter dating back to 2013.
The pair also cooked up an embezzlement scheme. In 2019, LCSS removed Stiles’ signature authority over company bank accounts on suspicion that she was stealing, but she stayed on as vice president.
She and her husband believed she wasn’t being paid as much as other corporate officers. So they decided to steal by creating a shell company to divert company funds.
Stiles and Bachik formed a fake outfit called Stonewall Business Management.
Stiles directed payments from LCSS to the fake company, which was controlled by Bachik. He then dispersed the money to himself and his wife.
Stiles tricked LCSS into thinking Stonewall was a real business. From July 3, 2019, to Feb. 28, 2020, Stiles deceived LCSS into issuing 12 cashier’s checks to Stonewall totaling about $56,000.
Stiles and Bachik will be sentenced in Johnstown in December. They remain free on bond until then.