Former Jacksonville Jaguars employee Amit Patel has been accused of stealing over $22 million from the franchise over a four-year span, according to court documents filed in Jacksonville’s U.S. District Court and as first reported by The Athletic.
“Patel is listed in the Jaguars’ media guides from 2018-2022. His titles during those years were coordinator, financial planning and analysis, and then manager, financial planning and analysis. The court filing states that he was fired in February 2023.
“His authority over the VCC program enabled Patel to, beginning in September 2019, allegedly make fraudulent transactions. The court filing states that he hid those transactions by identifying “reoccurring VCC transactions, such as catering, airfare, and hotel charges, and then duplicated those transactions; he inflated the amounts of legitimate reoccurring transactions; he entered completely fictitious transactions that might sound plausible, but that never actually occurred.
“The court filing states that Patel “used the proceeds of this scheme, in whole or part, to place bets with online gambling websites; to purchase a condominium in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; to pay for personal travel for himself and friends (including chartering private jets and booking luxury hotels and private rental residences); to acquire a new Tesla Model 3 sedan and Nissan pickup truck; to lodge a retainer with a criminal defense law firm; and to purchase cryptocurrency, non-fungible tokens, electronics, sports memorabilia, a country club membership, spa treatments, concerts and sporting event tickets, home furnishings and luxury wrist watches.”
The Athletic also included this statement from the Jaguars:
“We can confirm that in February 2023, the team terminated the employment of the individual named in the filing. Over the past several months we have cooperated fully with the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida during their investigation and thank them for their efforts in this case. As was made clear in the charges, this individual was a former manager of financial planning and analysis who took advantage of his trusted position to covertly and intentionally commit significant fraudulent financial activity at the team’s expense for personal benefit. This individual had no access to confidential football strategy, personnel or other football information. The team engaged experienced law and accounting firms to conduct a comprehensive independent review, which concluded that no other team employees were involved in or aware of his criminal activity.”
It goes without saying that what Patel did was wrong, but it is easy to get swept up in hypotheticals. 22 million dollars wouldn’t be enough to purchase Shad Khan’s “Kismet” yacht, which is worth an estimated $200 million, though you could charter it for $1.2 million per week.
Here’s some other stuff you could purchase with $22 million.
- Over 2,000,000 beers in the Bud Zone
- Over 2,000 tickets to Super Bowl LVIII
- Multiple homes on Ponte Vedra Boulevard
- Every single piece of autographed team memorabilia on Fanatics
What’s the first thing you would buy with all that money, Jags fans?