A former account manager and bookkeeper at a Virginia Beach law firm pleaded guilty today in federal court in Norfolk to forging firm checks totaling $567,075.
Diana L. Farmer-Forston, 54, of Virginia Beach, forged the signature of a principal of Bennett and Zydron PC on 210 checks between July 2007 and February 2011, according to the statement of facts filed in the case.
She made fraudulent entries in to the firm’s ledgers to make it appear that the checks had been issued for legitimate purposes and deposited the checks into accounts she maintained at Navy Federal Credit Union.
Farmer-Forston used the money to finance investment accounts, purchase a 2009 BMW and buy electronic equipment and other items. She also used it to pay her mortgage and other expenses and to lend money to a co-worker.
She faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison when she is sentenced on Oct. 25. The case was investigated initially by the Virginia Beach Police Department after an attorney suspected her of embezzlement.
By Alan Cooper