A married couple who own a travel business were charged with embezzlement after they allegedly accepted payment for booking international trips to Japan for San Diego high school band members and their parents, and then cancelled the trips. The company then filed for bankruptcy and the people were not offered refunds for the thousands of dollars they had spent.
Brad and Margie Matheson are the proprietors of a Georgia based travel service called Harmony International. In January 2016, they extended a package to four San Diego area high school’s band departments. The offer was for the school’s band members to take an international trip where parents could accompany their children to Japan.
Brad Matheson presented the offer in a Skype meeting telling parents and students, “If you register before March 1, 2016, for this group, you’ll receive free trip cancellation insurance.” He stated this offer was intended as an added incentive bonus in order to encourage early registration.