Former KU Medical Center employee pleads guilty in $500K embezzlement scheme
photo by: Sara Shepherd
A former University of Kansas Medical Center employee has pleaded guilty to charges related to an embezzlement scheme that resulted in the theft of more than $500,000.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Kansas announced in a news release Tuesday that Michael Tae Kim Ahlers, 49, of Lenexa, pleaded guilty to the federal charges of bank fraud and filing a false tax return. He is scheduled to be sentenced in May.
Ahlers was accused of using his position as an administrative officer for the medical center’s occupational therapy education department in Kansas City, Kan., to embezzle the funds from the medical center.
“His guilty plea should send a message that, no matter your position, you cannot profit illegally or violate the trust of the company who hires you,” First Assistant U.S. Attorney Duston Slinkard said in the news release.
According to the federal attorneys, Ahlers was responsible for administrative tasks and financial transactions for the department. Between 2009 and 2015, he deposited department funds into a credit union account to avoid the medical center’s normal financial oversight and to use the funds for his personal expenses. He then created false invoices to cover up the missing funds. Ahlers also failed to report the embezzled funds on his federal tax returns.