- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 27, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A Rhode Island man who was a sales executive for Dr. Pepper is pleading guilty to defrauding the soft drink company.

U.S. Attorney for Rhode Island Stephen Dambruch’s office said 52-year-old Michael Lynch, of Newport, admitted to submitting more than 200 fraudulent invoices totaling roughly $1.7 million to the company from 2007 to 2017.

Prosecutors say Lynch created a promotions and marketing company in his wife’s name and billed Dr. Pepper for services that were never provided.

Lynch also admitted he failed to declare any of the income from the scheme on his federal tax filings, which prosecutors say amounted to a tax loss of almost $400,000. He’s scheduled to be sentenced June 1.

Wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

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