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Thursday, March 22 Police Reports

NY woman admits stealing $1.1M from Darien car dealership

A New York woman waived her right to be indicted and pleaded guilty to stealing more than $1.1 million from Continental BMW of Darien.

Vanessa Vence-Small, 50, of New Windsor, N.Y. pleaded guilty Thursday before Judge Jeffrey Alker Meyer in New Haven.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Vence-Small was the controller of Felix F. Callari, Inc., doing business as the Continental BMW of Darien automobile dealership.

John Durham, U.S. Attorney for Connecticut, said in a release that from October 2014 to June 2017, Vence-Smallmade 65 unauthorized electronic fund transfers, totaling $904,659.29, from the dealership’s bank account to her personal American Express account.

Vence-Small also issued and signed 28 checks drawn on the dealership’s bank account, in the total amount of $207,777.78, to pay various third parties, including credit card companies, contractors who performed work at her residence, and a different dealership from which she purchased a car.

She also incurred on company accounts an additional $31,452.08 in unauthorized credit card charges and reimbursements.

Meyer scheduled sentencing for May 24 at which time Vence-Small faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, a fine of up to approximately $2.3 million, and an order of full restitution.

Vence-Small was released on a $100,000 bond pending sentencing.

This matter was being investigated by the U.S. Secret Service, Darien Police Department and Connecticut Financial Crimes Task Force. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hal Chen.