This article in the Post made my blood run cold.
For those of you with agents, I imagine you're feeling the chill as well.
And the next question is of course: how can you guard against this kind of thing?
When you ask your agent about money if you hear anything other than "the check has been received, and your funds are on their way to you via EFT or by check #123" TAKE NOTICE.
Royalties are issued on an established schedule. That time frame is listed in your contract. If you don't get royalties make sure you see the royalty statement.
If you think you're owed money, ask your agent.
If your agent is making excuses, ask your editor.
Find authors at the same agency or publisher. Ask about their experience. If everyone from your publisher is getting paid, but no one else at your agency is, you know what the problem is.
If no one is giving you straight answers, get an accountant, and ask him/her.
Your contract should contain an AUDIT CLAUSE that allows you or your designated representative to examine the books of the publisher at least once a year. If their books are in order, you know the problem is closer to home.
How someone managed to steal this much money for so long boggles my mind.
How no one seemed to notice stymies me.