Photo: Palo Alto Courthouse
SANTA CLARA COUNTY – The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office has announced the success of prosecuting charges against a manager operating a landscaping company. The announcement came on Thursday as prosecutors detailed how 51-year-old Guadalupe Ruzic of Los Gatos stole more than $736,000 during her employment, purchasing such items as Gucci handbags, jewelry, a vacation timeshare, and 49er season tickets.
“The defendant’s greed and criminality brought the family-owned business that had employed her to the edge of insolvency,” Prosecutor Peter Waite said. Ruzic was given a sentence of five years in prison for the embezzlement that occurred in 2014 and has since forfeited all property and proceeds stolen during her employment at the company.
Wait said, “Ruzic pleaded no contest last month to felony embezzlement and forgery charges.” The fraud was discovered in early February of 2014.
Using the company’s computer and a QuickBooks software program using a check stamp, she wrote numerous checks to herself.
Ruzic paid on false invoices under fictitious business names, making it appear that she was paying contractors. However, during this time she had failed to pay the real contract invoices causing the fraud to be uncovered.
Ruzic remained incarcerated up to her sentencing and is expected to be released from prison within the next year under an agreement between Ruzic and the prosecuting attorney assigned to the case.