Men Accused of Laundering $300K From Local Business

Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2013 -- 10:52 p.m.

A local man pleaded guilty Tuesday to laundering hundreds of thousands of dollars from his former employer to fund his own business.

Steve Schmidt, 56, from Fitchburg is facing up to 20 years in prison.

Authorities said that before 2007, Schmidt worked at It's Your Party, a Madison party event company. Schmidt is accused of embezzling about $323,000 before being fired.

Much of the money ended up at House of Flowers, a floral shop Schmidt co-owned with 47-year-old Darren Utalowski.

Ulatowski pleaded guilty earlier this month to mail fraud related to the same money-laundering scheme. Their company is now closed down, and both men will face sentencing in May.

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