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Local CPA guilty of stealing estate funds

Posted: June 5, 2014 5:57 p.m.
Updated: June 6, 2014 5:00 a.m.

A federal jury found Joseph Glenn Folsom Jr., 61, a certified public accountant living on Blue Heron Lane at Lake Wateree, guilty Wednesday on four counts of the interstate transportation of stolen money. According to a press release from the South Carolina U.S. Attorney’s office, the guilty verdict came at the end of a three-day trial in Columbia. U.S. District Judge Joseph F. Anderson Jr. presided over the trial and will sentence Folsom at a later date.

According to U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles, evidence presented at trial established that Folsom prepared taxes for a woman listed as “E.F.” in court documents, and her husband, for 30 years. E.F. asked Folsom to draft her will in December 2006. Folsom did so, Nettles said, naming himself as executor. When she died 10 months later, Folsom used his power as executor to steal funds from the estate, using the money to buy classic cars, an airplane and lake property. In all, Nettles said Folsom stole approximately $580,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Winston Holliday, who prosecuted the case, confirmed that Folsom maintained an office in Bishopville. He also explained the interstate nature of Folsom’s crime.

“(He) attended car auctions in Moultrie, Ga., and Daytona Beach, Fla., where he purchased classic cars using money from the estate over which he was the executor,” Holliday said in an email. “Handing the checks over in those other states, which were made good with estate money in South Carolina, was the interstate transportation.”

Nettles said his office will continue to “prosecute those who abuse the trust placed in them by our most vulnerable citizens, in this case, an elderly woman and her family. We are grateful for a system of justice that holds Glenn Folsom and those like him accountable for their actions.”

David A. Thomas, FBI special agent in charge, said the agency is pleased with the outcome.

“This individual betrayed the confidence and trust placed in him, and the financial losses in this case were staggering,” Thomas said. “We will continue working with our partners to identify and stop those who line their own pockets at the expense of others.

Nettles said Folsom could receive a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and/or a fine of $250,000.

The case was investigated by FBI agents, and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Winston Holliday of the Columbia office.

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