- Published on 23 September 2016
On September 21, Starkey Hearing Technologies, Minneapolis, MN, USA announced that five of their former management team have been charged with fraud amounting to more than USD 20 million. Investigations by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and US Postal Inspection, point to a conspiracy over several years to embezzle the money.
Those indicted include Jerry Ruzicka, 17-year long Starkey Director, who held a position of complete trust after being hired by the company’s principal owner William F. Austin. Ruzicka was also twice chairperson of the American Hearing Industries Association (HIA). Other people charged in the case include Larry Hagen, founder of the company MicroTech and cofounder of SoundPoint Audiology, as well as former company execs Scott Nelson, Lawrence Miller, and Jeffrey Taylor.
“This indictment describes a massive and long-running fraud scheme against a corporation by those in positions of trust,” said United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger. “The defendants carried out a complex scheme to accomplish a simple goal: to embezzle funds for their own benefit.”Source: US Department of Justice (Minnesota); Starkey Hearing Technologies