News and Press Releases

Woman with history of fraud sought out bookkeeping jobs and stole more than $400,000

January 20, 2006

DONNA M. DAVIS, 41, of Woodinville, Washington was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 41 months in prison and three years of supervised release for Mail Fraud. DAVIS was ordered to pay $422,197 in restitution. At sentencing, U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Zilly told DAVIS, “you have a history of crimes that are of a similar nature.”

According to court records, DAVIS and her husband, Paul Davis, formed DP Associates in Mill Creek, Washington, in 1996. The firm offered bookkeeping services to small businesses, especially busy medical professionals. As early as 1998 DAVIS deposited checks made out to clients into her own bank account. By 2000, the scheme had been uncovered when one medical practice hired an outside auditor to go over the books. DAVIS had stolen more than $262,000 from clients. Before the investigation by Mill Creek Police was complete, DAVIS moved with her family to Idaho. Federal charges regarding that fraud were filed in November, 2004, and DAVIS pleaded guilty in March, 2005. However, prior to the June, 2005, sentencing, the government learned that DAVIS had taken another bookkeeping job in May, 2003, and had defrauded that employer, Pacific Retina Specialists, of more than $160,000.

Assistant United States Attorney Kathryn Warma argued for a sentence at the top end of the guidelines range noting that DAVIS had previously been convicted in Washington State and Arizona of similar frauds. In fact, in both those cases the judge had instructed DAVIS that she was not to hold a position where she handled money or negotiated securities. “Donna Davis has proved herself to be a serial fraudster, who has pursued her crimes relentlessly even despite past prosecutions, and on-going investigations,” Warma wrote to the court.

Judge Zilly told DAVIS he was surprised that after she learned the police were investigating the earlier theft using DP Associates, she then took another bookkeeping position and again stole from her employer. Judge Zilly added that, “the court also takes note that you have not cooperated or helped, in any way, as the victims attempt to reconstruct their finances....They will never know who paid what, when and where the money went.”

The case was investigated by the Mill Creek Police Department and the FBI. Assistant United States Attorney Kathryn A. Warma prosecuted the case.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206)553-4110.

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