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Man guilty of embezzling $2 million from Irvine firm

February 25, 2011 |  5:52 pm

Fulwider The former financial controller of an Irvine-based architectural firm was convicted Friday of embezzling nearly $2 million by stealing from corporate accounts and the personal account of one of the firm's owners.

Salvatory Josef Fulwider, 37, pleaded guilty to felony counts of grand theft, forgery and falsifying records. The Yorba Linda man is expected to be sentenced to 13 years in state prison at his sentencing June 3, according to the Orange County district attorney's office.

Fulwider worked as the financial controller at McLarand Vasquez Emsiek & Partners Inc. from November 2003 to March 2009. He was convicted of transferring more than $1.3 million from the personal bank account of one of the owners and using more than $550,000 of the stolen money to pay his personal credit cards.

Fulwider also was found to have used the remainder of the stolen money to pay for charges he made to his firm's corporate credit card. Claiming he paid the balance with his own money, Fulwider then fraudulently requested and received more than $680,000 in reimbursements from the firm, authorities said.

The firm began reviewing Fulwider's financial accounting in December 2008 after an owner attempted to use a corporate credit card and was declined.

Fulwider then attempted to conceal his theft by forging his personal bank statements to falsely show he had paid the credit card balance and also falsified other records.


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Photo: Salvatory Josef Fulwider

Credit: Orange County district attorney's office