The credibility of the evidence is significant in any case. Evidence can be in the form of documents or statements by witnesses. Therefore, investigators must take proper and legal approaches in obtaining evidence. Investigators can obtain evidence through voluntary consent, subpoena or search warrant. This can then allow the investigator to freely interview witnesses, analyze data, create a hypothesis, test the hypothesis, and come up with a conclusion. For example, in the Wells Fargo fraud case significant information came from voluntary statements from customers and ex-employees. They discovered that an incentive system created pressure on employees to sell unwanted or unneeded products to customers and, in some cases, to open unauthorized accounts.
ACFE. (2021). Planning and Conducting A Fraud Examination. https://www.acfe.com/uploadedFiles/Shared_Content/Products/Books_and_Manuals/U.S.%20Sample%20Chapter_2016.pdf
Flitter. E. (2020). The Price of Wells Fargo’s Fake Account Scandal Grows by $3 Billion.https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/21/business/wells-fargo-settlement.html
Hello Prof & Class,
An expert witness is a person with acknowledged and trustworthy expert knowledge, abilities, or experience in the subject matter of a court case. When a court needs to grasp the nature of material provided that is outside of the court’s expertise and experiences, expert evidence is called. The expert witness’ job is to interpret factual material and offer an objective and unbiased opinion on the issues in the case. An expert witness should, In general, be able to describe the facts or assumptions on which his or her judgment is based, including important facts that may affect or detract from the judgment. it is not an advocate for the party engaging them and should qualify their opinion as limited if a topic or issue falls outside his or her area of competence.
The following are some of the examples of difficulties for a forensic accountant to be used as an expert witness.
Firstly, they may not have access to the necessary data for accurate fact-finding and presenting a strong argument. For example, because they lack the broad powers of enforcement authorities, they are unable to access the books of accounts of related or unrelated businesses.
Second, forensic accountants do not always have access to the relevant people who can assist them connect the dots and reach a certain conclusion, in addition to data. They may not have access to those who know about the shady transactions, whether they are related or not.
Finally, forensic accountants frequently encounter the problem of not having meaningful data due to the company’s poor data management procedures. We’ve seen several examples where data isn’t securely backed up and firms have extremely poor data security protection, allowing data to be readily transferred out of the organization.
Kranacher, J. M., & Riley, R. (2019). Forensic accounting and fraud examination (2nd ed.). Wiley & Sons.
Hello professor and classmates, an expert witness is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education which would help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue. I would say they are identified by their expertise in their area, having the ability to always meet deadlines, and having your employer allowing you to be an expert witness are some ways they can be identified. Being an expert in your field would be very useful within the courts as we have seen medical practicians such as doctors can be said to be expert witness as their knowledge for the investigation can be counted on. With the investigation process they can be an aid to determine the issue in the case, including to see if the accused is innocent or guilty. I would say that a forensic accountant being a expert witness would be difficult because of their desire to over-share information. As an expert witness the forensic accountant would say much more that what is necessary to answer the questions asked by the lawyer and in some cases, it undermine them.