July 31, 2014
Defendant Forged and Cashed Fraudulent Checks
Las Vegas, NV – Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto announced that Maria Digna Ballesteros, 47, of Las Vegas, a former bookkeeper who embezzled over $500,000 from a previous employer during a five year period, was sentenced to two consecutive 12 to 48 month terms in the Nevada Department of Corrections and ordered to pay $515,363 in restitution.
Ballesteros pled guilty to two counts of embezzlement both Category “B” felonies as part of a plea negotiation to resolve multiple felony charges.
“The dedicated investigators and attorneys in the Nevada Attorney General’s Office will continue to serve Nevada by holding perpetrators, including Ballesteros, accountable,” said Masto.
The complaint filed with the Attorney General’s office alleged that former employee, Ballesteros had embezzled money from the owner of a Las Vegas based promotion company. An investigation by the AG’s Fraud Unit revealed that she had forged and cashed over 225 fraudulent checks and falsified bank records trying to create an illusion that the embezzled funds were never taken. In 2007, Maria Ballesteros was hired as a part-time bookkeeper. The owner of the business became aware of financial irregularities with his personal and business bank accounts, uncovering that Ballesteros had been forging payroll checks after they were distributed by the company.
The case was prosecuted by Gary J. Mathews, Deputy Attorney General in the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Justice- Fraud Unit. Read the criminal complaint here.
|BALLESTEROS, MARIA DIGNA ARANTO
(Photos courtesy of LVMPD)