FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) — Two Michigan men have been sentenced to prison following a scheme that took millions from a Fort Wayne dentist’s office.
Brian Nordan and Dustin Coleman were sentenced in U.S. District Court after pleading guilty to wire fraud.
The acting U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Indiana, Tina Nommay, says Nordan was hired by the Fort Wayne dentist and owner of his own practice as the office’s chief marketing officer in 2006. Nordan was eventually trusted to manage the day-to-day operations and was paid $250,000 a year for his work and to supervise over 100 employees.
Nommay says the owner became aware in the spring of 2018 that Nordan had been misappropriating funds from the practice for several years via multiple schemes. Forensic accountants found Nordan used company credit cards and reimbursement checks to pay for personal expenses, used company funds to pay off his personal credit cards, paid ghost wages and benefits to his husband and sister and also made unauthorized investments of his employer’s money into a toothpaste company, of which he co-owned, and sold the toothpaste back to the dental practice at marked-up rates. The forensic accountants determined Nordan’s schemes defrauded the office of more than $3 million.
Nommay says Coleman was Nordan’s domestic partner, then eventual husband, who was hired in 2012 to work on marketing for the business. The dentist/business owner said Coleman did perform some work, but was not aware Coleman was actually employed by the business from 2016 to 2018, and received nearly $150,000 in wages and benefits in the ‘ghost employment’ scheme.
Nordan was officially sentenced to 42 months in prison with two years of supervised release, and ordered to pay nearly $3 million in restitution. Coleman received six months in prison, 12 months of supervised release and ordered to pay nearly $150,000 in restitution.