PORTLAND — A Brunswick man accused of bilking Wright Express and L.L. Bean of hundreds of thousands of dollars pleaded guilty in federal court today to mail fraud and income tax evasion charges.

Matthew J. LaForge, 38, faces up to 20 years in prison on two mail fraud charges, up to five years for the tax evasion charge and fines of up to $250,000 for each count. He will be required to pay restitution to the companies, their insurers and the Internal Revenue Service.

While an employee at each of the companies, LaForge fraudulently billed each for marketing services supposedly provided by a fictitious company and had the payments sent to a mailbox he opened in New Hampshire.  He took about $231,000 from Wright Express from 2006 and 2008 and about $220,000 from L.L. Bean from 2009 to 2011, according to the government.

His failure to report illicit income between 2006 and 2010 resulted in more than $89,000 in unpaid income taxes, according to the government. 

LaForge will be sentenced at a later date. He is free on personal recognizance.


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