We once worked at a law firm where – ALLEGEDLY – a person working in the supply office took the firm for hundreds of thousands of dollars by buying herself weekly flower arrangements and stocking her home pantry with firm-purchased paper plates.
And while it was amusing (not so much to the partners) to look back on everyone frequently commenting how nice her spouse was for always sending her those tulips, it was not as funny as the Wilson Sonsini tab divider scam.
It wasn’t necessarily a high-minded scheme – basically the now-indicted employee would order tabs from accomplices at the supply company and, though paid for, the order would never be filled and the employee and supply company guys would split the cash. This went on for four years.
Lowering the Bar does the maths on this one, estimating that Wilson paid for about 5 million tabs it did not get. They also report that there is no indication that Wilson attorneys ever went without those ever-so-necessary exhibit-dividing tabs, which kept the scheme under the radar.
Perhaps this is one more reason to be thankful for electronic filing. Sending it all to Pacer means legal assistants only have to tab sets of documents for those too old-school to keep it all electronic. Ordering an extra $1 million in tabs should no longer go unnoticed.
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