A former Atlanta-based Verizon Wireless engineer will do four years in a federal prison and be forced to pay nearly $3 million in restitution for stealing – then selling – network communications gear from Cisco and Verizon over a 10-year period.
62-year-old Michael Baxter was fired from VzW in 2010, but in the 10 years prior to that, prosecutors say he turned in hundreds of fake service requests to Cisco for products under warranty; the equipment giant, in turn, sent him millions of dollars worth of parts which Baxter sold to third-party resellers and pocketed the cash, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle.
A judge sentenced him Wednesday to four years behind bars and ordered him to pay $2.3 million in restitution to Cisco. Baxter must also pay Verizon more than $450,000 for equipment that he simply purchased from Cisco – unrelated to service requests – and then sold for profit.
So what did he do with all of that cash? The U.S. attorney says Baxter was living the life, buying expensive cars, jewelry, trips, cosmetic surgery for his girlfriend, and the like.