A former stockbroker admitted Thursday in U.S. District Court in Portland to stealing more than $2.7 million from his former boss and spending it on luxury cars, jewelry, clothing, a cruise and other goods and services.
David Altenburg, 46, of Bath, pleaded guilty remotely to one count of wire fraud, seven counts of money laundering, one count of transferring property to prevent seizure and one count of aggravated identity theft, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
As part of a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, he’ll forfeit the two luxury cars to the government.
A sentencing date has not been set. Altenburg remains free on $10,000 unsecured bail set when he was arrested last October.
Altenburg used his access to his employer’s financial accounts to make approximately 106 wire transfers and other withdrawals, according to court documents. To execute his scheme, he fraudulently used the name and email address of a firm director to purportedly authorize certain transfers.
He used the diverted funds to pay for travel, make mortgage payments and purchase two vehicles, a 2016 Nissan Infiniti and a 2017 BMW, court documents said. After learning he was under investigation, he transferred the title of his residence to a trust managed by his wife in an effort to prevent its seizure.
Court documents show that Altenburg spent more than $26,000 in January 2020 on a cruise from Mexico to Los Angeles. Once in the City of Angels, he spent more than $15,000 on clothes and handbags from Yves Saint Laurent.
Seven months later, on a trip to New York City, he bought nearly $16,000 worth of luggage, clothing and accessories from a Gucci store. On Sept. 1, 2020, Altenburg paid nearly $42,000 in cash for the BMW in Mamaroneck, New York.
His plea agreement with federal prosecutors requires that he pay restitution to the victim and forfeit the cars to the government. Altenburg also waived his right to appeal his sentence to the First U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals if it is not longer than 6 1/2 years.
Altenburg faces up to 20 years and a fine of up to $250,000 on the wire fraud count, up to 20 years and a fine of up to $500,000 on three of the money laundering counts, up to 10 years and a fine of $250,000 on four of the money laundering counts, up to five years and a fine of $250,000 on the transferring property to prevent seizure count, and a consecutive mandatory minimum sentence of two years and a fine of up to $250,000 on the aggravated identity theft count.