Friday, January 30, 2009
Florida Woman Sentenced To Nearly 6 Years For $12.7 Million Embezzlement
Yolanda Serrano, 45, was sentenced last week to 5 years and 10 months in prison for embezzling $12.7 million from her former employer, Cocoa, Florida-based Southeast Petro Distributors, Inc., a gasoline distributor. Serrano, who pleaded guilty to wire fraud last September 30th, also must forfeit $455,000 in bank assets, under the plea agreement. She was originally arrested in April 2008 and charged with grand theft and "scheming to defraud" by state authorities, but indicted in August on federal wire fraud charges. Serrano worked for Southeast Petro Distributors, owned by Mike Shah and his family, since 1992, becoming the controller in 1998. From 2000 - 2007, Serrano embezzling from the company by transferring funds from corporate accounts to her own at SunTrust Bank. She used the funds to purchase a number of properties in Florida, Georgia and North Carolina. It was reported that she spent 3 million to build a waterfront pagoda in Florida.