Former Financial Controller Admits to Embezzling Almost Half a Million Dollars from Family-Owned San Diego Business
NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – July 21, 2021
SAN DIEGO – Derick Jonathan Cameron of Vancouver, Washington pleaded guilty in federal court today to wire fraud, admitting that while employed as the Financial Controller for San Diego-based RAL Investment Corporation, he embezzled more than $400,000.
In a hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jill L. Burkhardt, Cameron admitted he abused his access to the company’s accounting software and issued more than 200 unauthorized checks to himself using the electronic signature of the company’s CFO and deposited them into his personal bank account. He then concealed the payments by manipulating the company’s accounting records to make it appear that each check was issued to a legitimate third-party vendor for a business expense. The company discovered Cameron’s fraudulent activity in April 2018, fired Cameron, and reported the conduct to law enforcement when Cameron was unable to make his promised repayments on schedule.
"The impact of fraud on small businesses can be devastating,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Randy Grossman. “This defendant abused his position of trust to enrich himself, and he has been held to account for his crime.” Grossman praised Assistant U.S. Attorney Rebecca Kanter and the FBI case agents for their work handling this case.
“Mr. Cameron treated his job as Financial Controller as his own private expense account thinking he deserved more money,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Suzanne Turner. “His actions put the livelihood of the business in danger and hopefully today’s guilty plea brings a sense of justice and closure to the victim in this case.”
Cameron is scheduled to be sentenced on October 18, 2021 at 9:30 a.m. before U.S. District Judge Todd W. Robinson.
DEFENDANT Case Number 21cr2128-TWR
Derick Jonathan Cameron Age: 37 Vancouver, Washington
SUMMARY OF CHARGES
Wire Fraud – Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1343
Maximum penalty: Twenty years in prison and $250,000 fine, or twice the gain/loss, whichever is greater
Federal Bureau of Investigation