For the second time, a team from Monroe High School took top honors at Lakeland University’s Forensic Accounting Competition.
This was LU’s sixth consecutive Forensic Fraud Competition, which annually welcomes high schools from around the state to analyze and find solutions for well-publicized financial-based fraud cases. This year’s field included 23 teams from 17 schools. Becker CPA Review sponsors the competition.
This year’s case study centered on Frederick Darren Berg, who in 2012 was sentenced to 18 years in prison in Seattle after pleading guilty to defrauding hundreds of investors of more than $100 million through the Meridian Mortgage investment funds he ran for nearly a decade. It was the biggest Ponzi scheme in Washington state history.
Monroe’s presentation was awarded first place by the event’s judges, who consisted of accounting professionals from Johnsonville and Kohler along with Lakeland alumni.
A team from Cedarburg High School finished second, followed by teams from De Pere, Oconomowoc and Big Foot.
Prior to the student presentations and judging, the more than 120 visitors attended breakout sessions, including a CPA exam basics by Lakeland alumna Adrianna Coopman and presentations by the IRS-Criminal Investigations Unit, the Wisconsin Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney's Office.
The visiting students also watched a presentation about Lakeland’s nationally recognized accounting program by Brett Killion, LU’s assistant professor of accounting.