(KRON) — The former accountant for a paver company in Richmond was charged with six counts of embezzlement, money laundering, identity theft, and tax evasion, the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s office said on Tuesday.

According to the DA’s office, Angela Fae Brown, a 53-year-old Olivehurst woman, engaged in a $800,000 embezzlement scheme from September 2017 to November 2022 on her former employer Viking Pavers in Richmond.

The DA’s office said Brown “used her accounting skills to exploit financial vulnerabilities in the company to illegally enrich herself for nearly five years.” Brown did so in several different manners.

Instead of paying Viking Pavers directly, the DA’s office said Brown would pretend to be the company’s owner and create fake online accounts of third-party collaborators with payment processes linked to her personal bank account.

To bill the company extra charges, Brown would generate “hundreds of phony invoices and send them electronically to the fake account she controlled,” the DA’s office said.

After both falsely misrepresenting Viking Paver’s account as hers and overcharging the Richmond company with false invoices, Brown would then pay the false invoices into her personal bank account, the DA’s office said.

According to the DA’s office, Brown was able to sustain her embezzlement scheme for an extended period due to her “trusted employee status,” which allowed her access to various financial controls for Viking Pavers.

After more than four years of embezzling from Viking Pavers, Brown’s manager drew suspicions of her and eventually confronted her, the DA’s office said.

Brown was arrested on Friday and is currently in custody at the Martinez Detention Facility, the DA’s office said. Her bail is currently set at $2 million.

“In white-collar crimes, it’s of paramount importance for our Special Operations Unit to use forensic tools to recover stolen funds; funds some have gone to great lengths to conceal,” District Attorney Diana Becton said.



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