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Police say former Durst Lumber employee allegedly embezzled more than $75,000

By: Mike Koury | Woodward Talk | Published June 23, 2020

 Andrew Maurer

Andrew Maurer

BERKLEY — A 21-year-old Macomb Township man has been charged with felony embezzlement from a Berkley business and faces up to 15 years in prison.

Andrew Maurer has been charged with embezzlement of $50,000 or more, but less than $100,000, for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from Durst Lumber & Ace Hardware.

According to a report from the Berkley Public Safety Department, the company came to the police to report that Maurer, an “information technology employee,” allegedly was stealing money. On Feb. 24, Durst Lumber was alerted to missing money after an employee noticed several inconsistent credit card returns. The multiple returns, totaling $2,331.95, were linked to an ACE Rewards account belonging to Maurer, police said.

“(The returns) seemed in excess for a certain time period over a couple days,” Berkley Public Safety Detective Lt. Andrew Hadfield said. ‘They started looking into it and realized … the returns were being processed by an employee to his personal account. So they were able to identify a little bit of what they thought was going on in regards to it.”

Through its investigation, the Public Safety Department received all transactions relating to Maurer’s account dating back to 2014. Police found the alleged embezzlement began in July 2017 and continued through February 2020.

“The general idea is that they were able to link the account he was making the return transactions on, and we were able to go all the way back to 2017, and (we were) able to find several thousands of dollars each month that were being returned to an account for purchases that weren’t made by the subject,” Hadfield said. “He was using a way to say there was a return without there actually being a return of property and was crediting that to his account.”

In 2017, Maurer allegedly stole $14,506.16. In 2018, he allegedly took $31,591.52, followed by $11,765.76 in 2019 and $18,443.57 in 2020. In total, $76,307.01 was taken from Durst Lumber over the two and a half years, police said.

The police report states that police spoke with Maurer, and he admitted to stealing the money and detailed how to authorities.

Maurer’s case currently is in the Oakland County Circuit Court after he originally was arraigned in the 44th District Court. He was arraigned June 17 and has a pretrial scheduled for 11 a.m. July 1.

Maurer’s attorney, David Kramer, declined to give a comment on the case.