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Levittown Man Sentenced for Scam That Cost Employer $86K

January 20, 2016

Contact: Marc Furber, 215.348.6339, mjfurber@buckscounty.org

A Levittown man who admitted embezzling more than $86,000 from his employer over a two-year period was sentenced today to serve 11 ½ to 23 months in the Bucks County Correctional Facility.

Robert Edward Keown, 31, admitted stealing the money by diverting funds to his personal debit and credit cards and reporting the money as refunds he had paid to customers of Hearing Lab Technology. He worked as a district manager in the company’s Bristol Borough office until he was fired last January.

Keown pleaded guilty in September to theft by deception, identity theft, unlawful use of a computer and computer trespass, all third-degree felonies. At his sentencing today, he told Bucks County Judge Rea B. Boylan that he had used the money in part for prescription drugs for himself and a woman with whom he was involved.

The company “gave me a great opportunity and treated me like family, and I betrayed their trust,” Keown told Boylan.

Deputy District Attorney Marc J. Furber, who prosecuted the case, said Keown was earning a handsome salary and had no reason other than materialism for his actions. “This was a crime of greed, not a crime of necessity,” Furber said in court.

Boylan said Keown had shown little insight into his behavior, and that she “was astonished” to learn that he had quit a low-paying job recently that Keown could have used to help repay Hearing Lab Technology for its losses. In addition to the prison sentence, Boylan sentenced Keown to five years of consecutive probation and ordered him to pay the company $86,616.50 in restitution.

Hearing Lab Technology manufactures and sells hearing aids. It allows customers to return hearing aids within 30 days of purchase for a full refund. Keown was the primary person responsible for processing credit card transactions, including sales and refunds, at the Bristol location.

A quality assurance manager discovered the thefts when she noticed that a refund credit had been issued to a credit card that was different from the one used to make the purchase. She investigated further and saw that many more refunds had been issued to the same card number.

That card turned out to be Keown’s personal debit card. He also used a personal credit card to receive other funds. In some cases, company investigators found, Keown made double refunds to the customer and to himself. In others, he issued refunds in the names of customers who had not requested them – including his own grandmother – and sent the funds to his personal accounts.

Approved for release by Daniel B. Sweeney, Deputy District Attorney.


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Office of the District Attorney
Bucks County Justice Center
100 N. Main Street
Doylestown, PA 18901 
Phone: 215-348-6344 
Fax: 215-348-6299

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