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    Bookkeeper at Real Estate Firm Charged with more than $1 Million Embezzlement

    News Release

    VENTURA, California – District Attorney Erik Nasarenko announced today that Dana Hiscock Vines (DOB 11/16/61), of Thousand Oaks, was recently arrested and charged with 18 counts of grand theft and a special allegation that the total theft exceeded $500,000.

    From 2007 to 2020, Vines worked for Aviara Real Estate (Aviara), handling bookkeeping, payroll, and human resource duties. In 2020, Aviara discovered Vines prepared and distributed altered company bank statements that omitted large payments made on her personal credit card accounts. Vines was then terminated, and an audit revealed that since 2012, she embezzled approximately $1,050,000 by using Aviara’s funds to pay personal credit card bills, secure unauthorized bonuses, and pay unauthorized health insurance premiums for herself and family.

    “The charges against Vines were filed by the District Attorney’s Office Fraud and Technology Crimes Unit and resulted from an investigation conducted by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Bureau,” said District Attorney Erik Nasarenko. “Complex fraud cases like these are time intensive and require highly specialized investigation. We are grateful for the close collaboration between our office and the Sheriff’s office that brought to light a number of alleged embezzlement crimes.”

    On August 10, 2022, Vines was arraigned and pled not guilty. She is scheduled for an early disposition conference on October 5, 2022, at 9:00 a.m., in courtroom 12 of the Ventura County Superior Court. Vines faces a maximum sentence of 19 years 4 months in prison if convicted on all charges.


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