Electronic Game Card had created an innovative new product. After spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on R&D, it had patented a small digital device, about the size of a credit card. The CEO said this device was in high demand; particularly from the lottery industry, where companies saw it as an alternative to the scratch card. Sales were growing and the company was profitable; the future looked bright.

But there was something not quite right about the company. Its customers had no online presence, and the company’s bank account and accounts receivable were linked to offshore P.O. boxes. The audit partner said everything was fine, and signed off on the audits. But when a new CFO flew to London to track down a bookkeeper, he uncovered the company’s dark secret.