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Faces of Fraud: Cases and Lessons from a Life Fighting Fraudsters


The ultimate tool for understanding, investigating and preventing fraud

Fraud is an evil with a life of its own that leaves a financial, repetitional, and emotional toll on its victims. While monumental scandals, such as Enron, WorldCom, and Madoff's Ponzi scheme make the front pages, fraud is a daily occurrence impacting companies and individuals alike. Faces of Fraud reveals must-know characteristics of fraudsters and the skills needed to outwit them. Recognized Fraud Fighting Expert Martin Biegelman draws from his 40 years of experience fighting fraud to profile not only the key traits fraudsters share, but also the qualities fraud examiners must possess to be successful.

  • Each chapter contains stories from actual cases that the author investigated
  • Profiles the must-know characteristics of fraudsters and the skills you'll need to outwit them
  • Reveals the traits of accomplished fraud examiners
  • Explores the best practices in fraud detection, investigation and prevention to cultivate in order to maximize success
  • Written by fraud fighting expert Martin T. Biegelman

Although fraud will never be completely eradicated, there is much that can be done to reduce the number and size of frauds that take place in any organization. Boiling down the key lessons the author has culled from his long career, Faces of Fraud entertains and informs with stories from real cases the author investigated over his long career, and imparts useful tips you can start using right away in the fraud examination field.




Chapter 1 The Fraudster Mindset

A Silver Tongued Devil

Sell the Sizzle, Not the Steak

Dr. Donald Cressey and the Fraud Triangle

Fraud Diamond

Fraud Theories

Fraudster Mindset


Chapter 2 A Short History of Fraud in America

Growth of Mail Fraud

Green Goods Swindles


Baker Heirs’ Swindle

Golden Age of Fraud

Rise of Boiler Rooms and Bucket Shops

Other Frauds over the Years

Enactment of the Mail Fraud Statute

The Continuous Onslaught of Fraud

Chapter 3 Use Your Imagination

The Mob Stings Fraudsters

Making the Typewriter Talk

Where the Law of Gravity Doesn’t Apply

Welfare for the Deceased

The Value of Imagination


Chapter 4 Make Yourself Lucky

Fraudster Stupidity Is Your Friend

One Man’s Trash Is an Investigator’s Gold

Let Them Talk

Arson for Profit Case: Impeaching the Defense Expert

One Federal Agent’s Attention to Detail

Look and You Shall Find

Don’t Take No for an Answer

If You Don’t Ask, You Will Never Know


Chapter 5 Patience Is a Virtue

Stopping a Fraud Scheme

New York State of Fraud


Chapter 6 Fraud Can Be Murder

Good Humor Ice Cream Scandal

Bad Ham and Bribes

Golden Needles Acupuncture

Blast from the Past

Security Guard Indignity

Next Time Dead


Chapter 7 Arrogance and Recidivism

If You Are Here, You Are Not As Smart As You Think You Are

Arrogance Is Common

Arrogance and Recidivism Often Go Hand-in-Hand

Arrogance and Rebate Fraud

Making It a True Federal Case

Fraudsters Say and Do the Darndest Things


Chapter 8 Informants and Whistleblowers: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Managing Confidential Informants

Informants Gone Bad

Falling in Love with an Informant

Nightmare Informants

A Rogue FBI Agent Strikes a Deal with Two Devils

Avoid a Failed Investigation


Chapter 9 A Tale of Deceitful Pitches and Vendor Kickbacks

History of American Chemical Industries

Description of the Fraud Scheme

Detection and Investigation of the Fraud Scheme

The Continuing Investigation


Special Circumstances

Fraud Prevention


Chapter 10 Cruise to Nowhere

Description of the Fraud Scheme



Factoring of Credit Card Charges

Investigative Reporting

Execution of Search Warrant


Undercover Trip


Special Circumstances

Fraud Prevention

Investigative Best Practices


Chapter 11 Who’s Who of Fraud: A Story of Vanity and Deception

The Making of a Fraudster

Fraud Scheme

The Investigation

The Prosecution

Special Circumstances and Additional Fraud



Chapter 12 Kids and Coins: Scoundrels without a Conscience

Genesis of the Fraud

Description of the Fraud Scheme



Special Circumstances

Fraud Prevention


Chapter 13 More Tips, Best Practices, and Lessons

Become a Subject Matter Expert

Documents, Documents, and More Documents

Remember the Boy Scout Motto

Why I Love Liars

Fraudsters Love Expense Report Fraud

San Francisco Metergate

Yellow Pages Invoice Scam

Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Awry


Chapter 14 Power of Prosecution and Prevention

Fraud Prevention for Individuals

Fraud Prevention for Business Organizations

Fraudsters Are the Same Everywhere

Fraud Is the Golden Goose for Criminals

It’s Déjà vu All Over Again

Sadly, Fraud Is Here to Stay


About the Author