News


Bookkeeper sentenced for embezzlement

By Laura Dixon

Bay City News Service

Ann Ray, 67, a bookkeeper and former resident of Woodside, was sentenced Wednesday, Oct. 26, to 46 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $6 million for embezzling at least $5 million from her former employer, a U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman said.

Ms. Ray, 67, also known as Georgia Engelhart, and a resident of Antioch, was ordered to pay $4.5 million in restitution to a San Carlos family -- her former employer of more than three decades for whom she did accounting work -- and another $1.6 million to the IRS for tax evasion, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

For 34 years, Ms. Ray was a bookkeeper for several businesses owned by the San Carlos family -- referenced in court documents as the "T" family.

In the 1980s, she began transferring small amounts of money from the family's various business accounts to her personal bank accounts. By 2004, she was stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars per year and spending the embezzled cash on everything from everyday expenses to gambling binges at casinos, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

During her time as a trusted family employee, she continued to embezzle money from the family through 2009, writing herself personal checks or transferring the money from business bank accounts to her own credit cards.

To hide the thefts, she "manipulated the companies' bookkeeping, records and bank statements almost on a daily basis," according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Ms. Ray failed to tell her CPA about the embezzlement while preparing her personal tax returns and did not report any of the embezzled receipts as income.

In July, the former bookkeeper pleaded guilty to six counts of tax evasion after an IRS investigation exposed the embezzlement.

Comments

 +   Like this comment
Posted by R.Gordon
a resident of another community
on Oct 30, 2011 at 1:10 pm

While I condemn Ray for her greed while in a position privately held since it is one of the most common kinds of thefts done in the private sector, mainly accounting where what she did, has been done to practically hundreds of celebrity in the public eye like actors, for decades as well as in the music business and probably where quick fame and celebrity makes ordinary humans rich and vulnerable overnight.It happened where accountants who were loyal and honest, just get that old standby, "greed". It is similar to what has happened to people in the Silicon Valley as seen with the FACEBOOK film, only with new types of victims whose fortunes grow faster than the tycoons like the Rockefellers, and Eastern families when this country went through the benefits of the industrial revolution.
Today, most of the rich are venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and everyone knows about banking because it has played an important part of bringing down our economy.
Still, there is major investigation happening more and more in the private sector of our Mid Peninsula because of the same kind of wealth which most of those who have acquired it, are now being questioned and their books are being investigated in a "mini" Madoff way.....So, I don't feel badly for Ray/Engelhart because what she did was as wrong as anyone who profits through illegal gains and they eventually feel little conscious because they prefer to be part of the 1% and not think about the consequences.
My father went through a tax audit that lasted some 3 years and it all stemmed from having been involved with a couple of master investors in San Francisco; both from famous established firms, but my father quite rightfully had them put away for a lot longer than Ms. Ray's sentence.


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