A Sunset Hills accounting business closed abruptly last week just days before the tax deadline. Its owner was sentenced to five years in prison for stealing $19,869 from a client. Mary Beth Gable, 55, owner of MEG Accounting and Tax Services at 10345 Watson Rd., pleaded guilty to the theft charge in February. Gable, of the […]
Maybe color blindness is the reason everyone misses the “red flags.”
The Securities and Exchange Commission charged a supplier of body armor to the U.S. military for engaging in what it called “massive accounting fraud.”
The SEC alleges that DBH Industries, now known as Point Blank Solutions Inc. (PBSOQ), “engaged in pervasive accounting and disclosure fraud through its senior officers and misappropriated company assets to personally benefit” its former chief executive, David Brooks.
The regulator also charged outside directors Jerome Krantz, Cary Chasin and Gary Nadelman for their parts in the scheme, saying they were “willfully blind to numerous red flags” signaling the fraud.”
“As the fraud swirled around them, Krantz, Chasin, and Nadelman ignored the obvious and submitted to the directives and decisions of DHB’s senior management while themselves profiting from sales of the company’s securities,” said Eric Bustillo, director at the SEC’s Miami office.
The PCAOB issued a friendly reminder yesterday to auditors that sometimes unusual transactions can be cause for alarm and should send the risk red flags flying. Unfortunately, the friendly reminder did not actually mention anything about what “unusual transactions” are but regardless, you better be on the lookout for them.
“The PCAOB’s message to auditors, in this challenging economic environment, has consistently emphasized attention to audit risk and adherence to existing audit requirements,” said Martin F. Baumann, Chief Auditor and Director of Professional Standards.
Since Practice Alert No. 5 (makes it sound kind of hot, don’t it?) warns of the risk of material misstatement inherent to unusual transactions without mentioning what those transactions could be, we came up with three unusual transactions to which the PCAOB could possibly be referring. It isn’t called guidance for nothing, you’re on your own when it comes to determining what qualifies as unusual, little auditors. Hopefully this helps.
• Large and frequent A/P entries to an entity known only as “Candy” (substitute “Bubbles”, “Kitty”, or “Roxy” as appropriate) This is why you have professional judgment so use it, we’re pretty sure even if you haven’t been to a strip club you know what strippers look like on the books and records.
• If you find yourself in a warehouse on December 31st counting an inventory full of dirty bombs, AK-47s, plutonium rods, chances are your entity is engaged in “unusual transactions.” Bonus points for extra unusual if you’re counting that crap and your entity is a church. Red flag, dear auditor, red flag!
• Recurring transactions for “crack” are definitely unusual. You don’t need us to tell you that’s a giant red flag, unless you are auditing under the influence yourself and concerned mostly with where the entity’s CFO hides his stash. Remember also that crack is pretty cheap on the street so repeated transactions will likely fall outside the scope of materiality though a raging crack habit will be material in the aggregate. Adjust scope accordingly.