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Press Release

Carlsbad Woman Sentenced to 41 months for $4.6 Million Fraud Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of California

Assistant U. S. Attorney Benjamin Holley (619) 546-7952

NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – October 13, 2015

SAN DIEGO – Susan Polmar of Carlsbad was sentenced in federal court today to 41 months in custody for stealing more than $4.6 million in a wire fraud scheme spanning six years.

As detailed in court filings, Polmar, a small-business owner, created a kiting scheme in which she submitted false customer information to a payment processing company, received advanced payment, and then covered the resulting debit by creating yet more fraudulent customer data. She then took money from the falsely inflated business accounts to fund numerous luxuries, including spending over $33,000 on trips to Disneyland and over $130,000 in construction on her Carlsbad home. Her fraud continued from 2007 through 2013, when it was discovered by an internal audit conducted by the owners of the payment processing company Polmar used.

The federal investigation, led by agents and detectives of the United States Secret Service’s San Diego Regional Fraud Task Force, revealed that the scheme required near-daily action by Polmar to maintain and that, over the course of her fraud, Polmar’s non-sufficient fund payments (from which she skimmed money for her personal and business use) totaled approximately $865 million.

During the sentencing hearing, Polmar also admitted that, after the investigation into her fraudulent conduct began but before she pleaded guilty, she defrauded the Pacific Rim PTA (of which she was then-President) by submitting false invoices for reimbursement totaling $3,700. After that fraud was discovered, Polmar repaid the money to the PTA.

At the sentencing hearing, United States District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns noted that Polmar had many positive qualities, including a supportive family and no criminal record. But, the judge said, the fact that Polmar stole millions of dollars for her personal expenses, especially when combined with her continued financial fraud after knowing of the federal investigation, justified a severe sanction. He accordingly imposed a 41-month prison sentence, to be followed by three years of supervised release. The judge also ordered Polmar to repay $4,655,464.34. At the conclusion of the hearing, Polmar was remanded into custody to begin serving her sentence.

DEFENDANT                                  Case Number: 15CR1075-LAB

Susan Polmar                                      Age: 47                                 

SUMMARY OF CHARGE                                                                    

Wire Fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343     

Maximum penalty: 20 years


United States Secret Service

Updated October 13, 2015

Financial Fraud
Press Release Number: CAS15-1013-Polmar