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.