Investigation continues into executive charged with embezzlement

Officials are conducting a recovery audit to determine how much a former executive embezzled from an Indiana County, Pennsylvania, gas drilling company, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports.

Larry Dean Winckler was recently jailed after an accounts payable audit revealed he had misappropriated $955,000 from Rayne Township-based Falcon Drilling. However, it's possible that total could reach as high as $5 million once the ongoing investigation reaches its conclusion.

"The scope of this is amazing when you look at it in its entirety," said trooper John Matchik, spokesman for the state police department.

According to an affidavit of probable cause cited by the news source, Winckler's accomplice Cheryl Brooks went to the district attorney's office earlier this month to admit her part in the scheme, which she said began in 2005. She claimed her guilty conscience was the reason she came forward, but Falcon Drilling's owner, Daniel Donahoe, contends that the impetus was another employee finding about the misappropriation.

Pennsylvania is one of the most at-risk states in the nation for embezzlement, according to a recent report by Marquet International.

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