Corporate Embezzler Sought Reduced Prison Punishment

From OC Weekly, “An Orange County payroll administrator secretly raided her Irvine employer’s bank accounts for seven years, created fake entries to mask her $1.2 million theft taken in $5,000 or $6,000 lumps, and used the windfall to pay for luxurious vacations, including $2,100-per-night suites for extended holiday stays at places like the Hotel Coronado in San Diego.

According to an FBI report obtained by the Weekly, Steadfast officials became suspicious after receiving an urgent ADP payroll notice in January 2015, but Chopin explained the unauthorized transfer of funds as an innocent error she would correct. The following month a second similar notice prompted Ana Marie Del Rio, the company’s chief operating officer, to launch a probe that included retrieving the payroll administrator’s employment file. Chopin clandestinely stole those records from Del Rio’s desk drawer and, a computer forensic investigation later showed, used the Internet to make an inquiry: “Why would my employer pull my employee file?””

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