St. Louis Public Radio News
12:11 am
Fri March 20, 2009

Former Brown Shoe exec faces mail fraud charges

St. Louis, MO – A former top official with Brown Shoe Company has been indicted on charges he used fraudulent invoices to fund the renovation of his home.

44-year-old Christopher Gray was in charge of all the maintenance and cleaning at Brown Shoe's properties. He is accused of inflating invoices to a contractor that was doing construction and renovation of Brown Shoe office spaces. The contractor allegedly used the extra funds - totaling $300,000 between June 2008 and late January 2009 - to work on Gray's home.

Gray and John J. Riley, the part-owner of the contractor, Interior Systems Contracting, both face one count of mail fraud. They face up to 20 years in prison and a $250,00 fine if convicted.

In a statement, Brown Shoe says it the company is deeply disappointed in Gray's actions, and is cooperating with authorities.