ST. GEORGE, Utah, Feb. 11, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — A St. George woman was arrested Friday after allegedly stealing nearly $350,000 over several years from a real estate firm where she was employed.
A probable cause statement from the 5th District Court of St. George said Enid Filoi Brown, 52, is facing five charges of second-degree felony theft, one count of class A misdemeanor theft, one count of second-degree felony unlawful dealing with property by fiduciary and one count of third-degree felony unlawful acquisition/possession/transfer of a financial card.
The probable cause statement said that on Jan. 30, the owner of a real estate firm in St. George reported to police that Brown had allegedly embezzled $150,000 from the company over several years.
Brown was employed as the officer manager/controller, which gave her access to the different company bank accounts, the statement said. The owner stated that when they learned of this theft, they met with Brown and recorded their conversation on Jan. 30. In that conversation, Brown reportedly admitted to taking money from the company over the last three years without permission. She estimated the amount to be around $150,000.
Several of the partners with the real estate firm started to go over their bank statements, and they learned that the amount was much more than the $150,000 that Brown had estimated, the statement said. They informed the St. George Police Department that the amount was actually $347,896.15; and the amount was taken from two of their business accounts.
The owner and some of the other partners met with Brown on Feb. 4. This conversation was also recorded.
“In that meeting, Enid admitted that this all started with their petty cash, and she was able to see that she could start using the company’s credit card that belonged to one of the partners,” the probable cause statement said. “She said that she would also use Venmo to transfer money to her kids as well as use the ATM to withdraw money from the company’s account.”
This reportedly started sometime in 2016 and continued until December 2018. Brown also admitted that in December 2018, she had altered some of the bank statements for the company in order to hide the money loss from some of the accounts.
The real estate firm was able to provide officials with one of the original altered bank statements, which allegedly shows a taped piece of paper with fictitious amounts over the actual amounts from the bank. Brown would then scan this statement to show the company a false amount in that account, the statement said. It was estimated that some months, Brown had had taken out as much as $10,000 to $12,000 from the accounts.
On Feb. 8, officials contacted Brown and asked if she would speak with them. She said that she would. Brown then had her attorney contact officials who informed them that Brown was not going to speak with officials about the incident.
Brown was arrested Friday and was transported to Washington County Jail, where her bail was set at $10,000.