Possible change of plea in San Marcos embezzlement case - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Possible change of plea in San Marcos embezzlement case

Posted: Updated:

VISTA (CNS) - A change of plea may be in the works in the case of a Riverside County woman accused of embezzling nearly $6 million from her San Marcos employer, a prosecutor indicated Thursday.

Elizabeth Ann Masters, 45, is charged with several felonies, including embezzlement by an employee, grand theft, theft by false pretenses, forgery and willfully filing a false tax return, according to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department's online jail records.

The defendant's preliminary hearing was scheduled for today, but the proceeding was postponed while her attorney talks to her about a possible change of plea, said Deputy District Attorney Anna Winn. A status conference was set for Tuesday.

Masters was arrested in New Mexico last June 22 after she allegedly fled California to avoid prosecution on the fraud charges. She has been jailed at the Las Colinas Detention Facility in Santee in lieu of $2.1 million bail since last summer.

Masters was fired from her clothing wholesaler employer, Proformance Apparel, in December 2011 after an audit found she had forged more than 700 company payroll checks and deposited them into her personal bank accounts, sheriff's Sgt. Mark Varnau said.

Prior to her termination, Masters worked for the company as a controller for nine years. She allegedly used much of the stolen money to buy and maintain a large horse ranch in Aguanga in rural southwestern Riverside County.

After her employers discovered the losses and reported the suspected embezzlement, Masters sold off animals and equipment from the equestrian facility and was able to repay about $500,000, the sergeant said.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Sudden storm rips through San Diego

    Sudden storm rips through San Diego

    Wednesday, September 17 2014 3:42 AM EDT2014-09-17 07:42:34 GMT
    Parts of San Diego were hit by a surprise storm Tuesday that pounded local communities and toppled scores of trees. 
    Parts of San Diego were hit by a surprise storm Tuesday that pounded local communities and toppled scores of trees. 
  • San Diego fiance pleads for Hurricane Odile aid

    San Diego fiance pleads for Hurricane Odile aid

    Wednesday, September 17 2014 1:17 AM EDT2014-09-17 05:17:17 GMT
    Hurricane Odile crashed one San Diego woman's bachelorette party in Cabo San Lucas. Rachel Lemay and her friends are among the thousands of tourists left stranded in the aftermath of what is now Tropical Storm Odile. And now Lemay's fiancé, who is in San Diego, is requesting humanitarian aid. 
    Hurricane Odile crashed one San Diego woman's bachelorette party in Cabo San Lucas. Rachel Lemay and her friends are among the thousands of tourists left stranded in the aftermath of what is now Tropical Storm Odile. And now Lemay's fiancé, who is in San Diego, is requesting humanitarian aid. 
  • California drivers must give bikes 3-foot buffer

    California drivers must give bikes 3-foot buffer

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 11:34 PM EDT2014-09-17 03:34:14 GMT
    Californians will now need to take extra care to steer clear of cyclists. 
    Californians will now need to take extra care to steer clear of cyclists. 
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.