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U.S. charges ex-Weber Shandwick COO with embezzlement

NEW YORK, July 27 (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors have charged a former chief operating officer of Weber Shandwick with embezzling more than $16 million from the public relations firm and, ultimately, shareholders of its parent Interpublic Group of Cos..

Frank Okunak was charged with wire fraud and falsifying records, according to a Wednesday filing in Manhattan federal court. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed related civil charges against him.

A lawyer for Okunak had no immediate comment.

(Reporting by Luc Cohen and Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Chris Reese)