Prosecutors: CPA who rooted out fraud invented numbers, companies to get away with one of his own

Prosecutors: CPA who rooted out fraud invented numbers, companies to get away with his own

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Not that long ago, Patrick Oki looked to be on top of the world.

He was a managing partner at PKF Pacific Hawaii, once one of Hawaii's largest CPA firms. And he was prominent in the community, once serving as president of the University of Hawaii alumni association.

On Monday, though, prosecutors detailed a long list of allegations against Oki as part of a scheme to steal more than $500,000 from his own firm.

"Numbers were invented, numbers added and subtracted, figures were adjusted, loans were invented out of thin air," deputy Prosecutor Chris Van Marter said in his opening statement to the court.

Over three years, prosecutors allege, Oki forged signatures, made up fictitious companies and people, and even made up fake dealings with the Central Intelligence Agency, all as part of four separate schemes to steal from the firm and his four partners.

"The didn't question him initially because the said it was part of some CIA arrangement. He couldn't talk about it. He even made them sign fake non-disclosure agreements." Van Marter said, during the first day of the non-jury trial.

Oki's defense attorneys opted not to give an opening statement Monday.

He faces 13 felony counts of money laundering, theft, and forgery. He's also charged with using a computer in the commission of a crime. If convicted of that charge, Oki could be sentenced to 20 years in prison without the possibility of parole.

Prosecutors say in one scheme, Oki created a fake company and then paid for the company's expenses himself and had the firm reimburse him. When his four other partners found out what he was doing, prosecutors say the partners turned him in to authorities.

"Your honor, the partners trusted him. He was the managing partner, they had known him for a number of years. They had no reason to question his representations. They assumed that what he was telling them was the truth." Van Marter said.

Oki is also accused of creating an elaborate network to cover his tracks using cooked books, fake IRS forms, and fake companies on the mainland.

The trial is slated resume later this week.

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