Two Phar-Mor Co-Defendants Ready to Plead Guilty
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (AP) _ Two former Phar-Mor Inc. executives have agreed to plead guilty in an alleged insider swindle and testify against the company’s ousted president, their defense attorneys said.
Patrick B. Finn, 34, of Canfield, former chief financial officer of the discount drug store chain, has signed a plea agreement with the government, his defense attorney, Gerald S. Gold, said Wednesday. Finn will testify against former Phar-Mor President Michael I. Monus, who is also charged in the alleged swindle, Gold said.
Gold declined to disclose the agreement’s other provisions until a judge approves it. No court date has been set, Gold said.
William T. Doyle, attorney for former Phar-Mor finance vice president Jeffrey C. Walley, 37, of Pittsburgh, told The (Youngstown) Vindicator in an article published Wednesday that Walley would plead guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Cleveland.
Doyle said Walley agreed to testify against Monus.Walley has met with authorities several times and ″explained to them what happened from his perspective,″ Doyle told the newspaper.
The Associated Press was unsuccessful Wednesday in seeking comment from Finn, Walley, Doyle, and assistant U.S. Attorney John D. Sammon, who handled the plea agreements. Finn and Walley have unlisted home phone numbers and messages left at the offices of Doyle and Sammon went unanswered.
Finn, Walley and Monus were indicted Friday by a federal grand jury. The 129-count indictment alleged that they carried off a $1.1 billion swindle.
Finn was indicted on five counts of money laundering, three counts of wire fraud and two counts each of mail fraud, bank fraud and helping prepare false income tax returns. He could face a 266-year prison term.
Walley was indicted on one count each of aiding and abetting a bank fraud and aiding and abetting a wire fraud and two counts of accepting company bonus money under false pretenses. He could face 80 years in prison.
Monus, 45, was indicted on 118 counts of money laundering, two counts of bank fraud, two counts of tax fraud, two counts of mail fraud, one count of conspiracy and four counts of mail fraud. The combined maximum prison terms for these charges is 1,431 years. Monus has promised to fight the charges.
Phar-Mor, based in Youngstown, filed for bankruptcy protection on Aug. 17, blaming the alleged fraud.