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Two Bay Area Residents Charged with Embezzlement

For release on June 1, 2021

CONTACT:

Paola Pretorius
Deputy District Attorney
Major Fraud Unit
(408) 792-2354

Two Bay Area Residents Charged with Embezzlement

Two Bay Area residents have been charged with embezzling more than $300,000 each from their employees, in separate cases.

Both defendants – Julie Amador, 46, of San Jose, and Shannon Marie Cardenas, 44, of Dublin, spent the money on personal expenses such as shopping, vacations, rent and phone bills. Cardenas is scheduled for arraignment this afternoon at 1:30 at the Hall of Justice in San Jose. Amador is still wanted.

“Please develop robust checks and balances for your business,” District Attorney Jeff Rosen said. “Trust but verify. Your livelihood depends on it.”

Amador, who worked for a company called Thync Global, Inc. in Los Gatos, as an office manager, is alleged to have embezzled over $300,000.00 between March 2018 and January 2020, by charging many personal items to the company credit card and then provided the owners of the company with false balance statements concealing her activity. The owners of the company detected the fraud in January 2020 when they discovered that a bank account that should have had over $300,000 in it only had $10,000.00. Amador has been charged with three felony counts of theft by an employee. If convicted, she could face incarceration and be required to pay restitution to the company.

Cardenas applied for a job as a controller with Urban Pacific Construction Inc. She is alleged to have used a false name, Social Security number and date of birth on her resume. She was hired and proceeded to submit fraudulently created checks to her personal bank account at Digital Federal Credit Union and shortly thereafter would withdraw the money and use it for personal things. She is suspected of embezzling over $490,000 over an 18-month period. Cardenas has been charged with 15 felony counts including three counts of violating theft by employee, several check fraud charges as well as three counts of identity theft for using the co-owner’s name without authorization. Cardenas faces a potential prison term.

The DA’s Office suggests the following steps to prevent embezzlement:

  • Set up dual authority so oversight is built into the handling of finances.
    (i.e., employee handling accounting is not the same employee in charge of writing checks).
  • Run background checks for people who handle finances.
  • Hire a CPA firm do a sampling of transactions on a regular interval.
  • If you have a business with a high amount of cash transactions, keep good records, exercise high scrutiny and/or oversight, and/or consider converting to a non-cash business.
  • When you discover an employee has been stealing, report it immediately to the police.

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Last updated: 6/1/2021 12:49 PM