August 11 2011
LOS ANGELES – Lisa Sackie, 47, of Solvang, California, has entered a guilty pleas to mail fraud charges arising from her embezzlement of $1.1 million from Santa Barbara Bay Foods, the U.S. Attorney and FBI announced today.
According to federal prosecutors, from 2004 – 2010, Sackie served as the Vice President and Controller of Santa Barbara Bay Foods, a nationwide wholesaler and distributor of gourmet foods products. Sackie’s duties at SBBF included supervision of SBBF’s accounts payable activities, signing checks on behalf of SBBF, handling regulatory matters for SBBF, and serving as SBBF’s de facto on-site plant manager and human resources director.
According to federal prosecutors, Sackie caused SBBF to issue a series of checks that did not pay for any business or other legitimate needs of SBBF, but were instead directed to the payment of defendant’s own personal expenses and for defendant’s own benefit. In numerous instances, Sackie concealed her actions by causing SBBF’s accounting system to reflect that checks had been made payable to entities doing legitimate business with SBBF when, in fact, the checks had been made payable to Sackie or to other entities for Sackie’s benefit. For example, between April 25, 2006 and January 5, 2010, Sackie caused the SBBF accounting system to reflect that a total of 47 checks, totaling over $750,000, had been issued by SBBF and made payable to “Challenge Dairy,” when, in fact, those checks had been made payable to Sackie herself or to the payment of her personal expenses.
Sackie also used an employee of SBBF to mail embezzled SBBF checks, that were made payable to American Express, in satisfaction of Sackie’s personal credit card obligations.
Sackie’s scheme resulted in losses to SBBF of approximately $1.1 million. As a result of today’s guilty pleas, Sackie faces a maximum statutory sentence of 40 years in federal prison.
Sackie is scheduled to be sentenced on November 7, 2011 by United States District Court Judge George Wu.
This case is a result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorney Angela Davis
Major Frauds Section