A California man who owned the former BP Peterman Law Group office in Brookfield has been charged with 11 financial crimes after he allegedly embezzled funds from the employee pension benefit plan and health care program. BP Peterman Law Group permanently closed in 2019.
Matthew Browndorf has been charged with nine counts of willful failure to collect/pay taxes, one count of theft or embezzlement from an employee benefit plan, and one count of theft or embezzlement in connection with health care. Those charges have been filed in the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
Browndorf was the CEO of holding company Plutos Sama. In 2016, Plutos Sama purchased J Peterman Legal Group, a law firm specializing in foreclosure law. That same year, J Peterman Legal Group was renamed BP Peterman. In addition to BP Peterman, Plutos Sama owned other law firms throughout the country.
Browndorf, as Plutos Sama’s CEO, was responsible for ensuring that Plutos Sama and BP Peterman collected and remitted payroll taxes, filed the appropriate payroll tax forms with IRS, remitted funds associated with their employee pension benefit plan, and remitted funds associated with their health care benefit program. According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Wisconsin, Browndorf “unlawfully failed to fulfill these obligations.”
The Dec. 6 indictment states Browndorf failed to truthfully account and pay over to the IRS over $474,000.
Browndorf is also currently facing separate charges in Maryland, including four counts of wire fraud and four counts of money laundering.