Potomac Man Sentenced to 15 Months in Prison for Embezzling $1.7 Million
Dwayne Wells embezzled more than $1.7 million from Ryco Associates.
On Monday, a U.S. District judge sentenced a Potomac man to 15 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for embezzling more than $1.7 million from a Laurel, Md., mechanical engineering firm he partly owned.
Dwayne Wells, 50, of Potomac was ordered by U.S. District Jude Peter J. Messitte to pay back the more than $1.7 million he stole from Ryco Associates — a mechanical engineering firm he owned with Charles Fash, a 52-year-old Rockville resident, according to a news release from the United States Attorney for the District of Maryland. The judge also ordered Wells to liquidate his ownership interest in The Nest -- a sports bar/restaurant in Baltimore -- and the Baltimore Mariners football team.
In 2008, Wells and Fash began loaning funds from Ryco Associates to the owner of The Nest, but when the bar's owner repaid them Wells and Fash pocketed the money instead of adding it into the company's accounts, according to the release. When the bar's owner could no longer pay back loans to Ryco Associates, Wells and Fash agreed to become part owners of The Nest instead of finishing the loan payments.
Additionally, Wells and Fash used Ryco Associates funds to gain part ownership of the Baltimore Mariners — a professional indoor football team. Also, Wells and Fash used their Ryco Associates company issued credit card to pay for thousands of dollars of expenses for the Baltimore Mariners and fraudulently used Ryco funds to pay the expenses.
Wells misused his Ryco-issued credit card to pay for thousands of dollars in personal expenses as well as more than $1 million to pay personal purposes, including The Nest and Baltimore Mariners. Wells had an active involvement in the embezzling of a total of $1,761,338.23.
Fash pleaded guilty to his participation in the scheme and a judge sentenced him to probation with three months of home confinement. A U.S. District judge ordered Fash to pay $29,961.31—the amount he stole from Ryco Associates and the liquidation of his ownership interested in the restaurant and football team.