Several executives of a major insurance brokerage used about $400,000 of the company's funds for personal purposes, according to a document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The company, Frank B. Hall & Co., Inc., made the voluntary disclosure to the SEC on July 5. The report was prepared by an audit committee of three outside directors.
According to the report, the investigation followed notice in January by Frank B. Hall's auditors. Touche Ross & Co. that "several items of questionable expenses which had been reimbursted to employees . . .appeared to be personal in nature."
Among those named in the report was William R. Baxter, who was a director of the Briarcliff Manor, N.Y., company and chief executive officer of the Los Angeles subsidiary where all questionable dealings took place. Baxter resigned from the company, but has been retained as a consultant on a contract subject to yearly renewal.
Another executive named was Richard A. Archer, who briefly was chairman of the parent before resigning in March, reportedly for health reasons. He is also a consultant to the Los Angeles subsidiary.
The report notes that, when Archer left Los Angeles in 1974 to move east to the parent company, he sold his home for $210,000 to Western Reinsurance Brokers, Inc., which was owned by an officer of Frank B. Hall.
The $210.000 valuation "was procured by an employee of the U.S. office of a London broker with which the (Frank B. Hall) subsidiary places insurance and . . . the house was sold by Western to such employee for $177.495."
Later, Western asked Frank B. Hall to pay the difference between Western's purchase price and the sales price, but the request was turned down by the company, Archer later wrote a personal check for the amount.
Other dealings revealed by the audit committee:
Wives of certain officers were paid a total of $55,500 between 1972 and 1975 for "interior decorating services" to the Los Angeles office.
Mebus Bartling, an executive entertained clients on his yacht in 1975 and 1976 and charged the Los Angeles office a charter rate of $1,000 a day. He collected a total of $185,000.
Baxter, Bartling and another executive owned 50 per cent of a jet aircraft and during 1976 collected $113,000 for renting the plane to the company.
Of the executives involved, only Baxter was requested to resign by the company. The audit committee, which found that most of the payments were "incorrectly booked," said that of the $400,000 in question, $321,214 was "recovered in cash," and promissory notes had been received for $46.813.
The SEC, and presumably the Internal Revenue Service, now may decide to take action against the individuals or the company on the basis of the voluntary disclosures.