Sunday, April 13, 2014

Joseph Tagler Charged with Stealing Eagle Market Makers Dividend Payments

An Oak Lawn man who allegedly used his position as a back office manager of a Chicago trading firm to steal or divert payments intended to go to the firm’s co-owners has been charged in a criminal complaint unsealed following his arrest. The charge was announced by Robert J. Holley, Special Agent  in Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI, and Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.

Joseph Tagler, 29, of the 5100 block of West 105th Street in Oak Lawn, was charged with one count of wire fraud, a felony offense, in connection with a transfer of $9,550 that occurred in January of this year. Tagler was arrested without incident by FBI agents at his residence and appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheila Finnegan, who released him on a $50,000 unsecured bond. No future court date has been set.

The complaint, filed under seal, alleges that Tagler, a back office manager and member of the board of directors for Eagle Market Makers, stole a total of over $700,000 during a 26-month period and that the money was used for Tagler’s personal use, including the purchase of a property for himself and his brother-in-law in Walkerton, Indiana. The complaint further alleges that the scheme was discovered last month as one of the co-owners, identified in the complaint as Principal A, was preparing to file tax returns and noted that the amount he received in dividend payments was less than what it appeared he was paid in paperwork he received from the company.

According to the complaint, a bank account of Principal B, who had directed Tagler to close the account in November 2011, was used to fund wire transfers in July 2011 and again in March 2013 for the purchase of two real estate parcels in Indiana. Principal B told investigators that what appeared to be his signatures on the wire transfer requests were not his and that he did not authorize the transfers. The complaint alleges that the same account was also used to deposit funds in the amounts of approximately $323, 700 in 2012 and approximately $496,000 in 2013, which funds were primarily Principal B’s dividend checks, and that most of the deposited funds were withdrawn from the account through checks made out to “Cash.” The withdrawal checks appeared to be endorsed by Tagler signing Principal B’s name, according to the complaint.

With respect to Principal A, Tagler allegedly prepared a November 2012 dividend check for him but did not send the check to Principal A’s residence in Alabama, as he was supposed to do. Tagler allegedly forged Principal A’s signature, deposited the funds into a bank account, and then withdrew the funds in cash.

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