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Terry Goddard Announces Third Arrest in Theft from Friendly House

(Phoenix, Ariz. – Jan. 6, 2009)  Attorney General Terry Goddard today announced the indictment and arrest of a third person accused of being part of a fraud ring that stole $198,000 from Friendly House, Inc., a community  organization in Phoenix that provides social work, youth education, senior services, employment and training.  

Rosalie Magana, 60, of Phoenix, was arrested Monday after being indicted last week on one count of fraudulent schemes and artifices and three counts of theft, all felonies. 

Julie Ann Perez, 47, of Phoenix, and Virginia Ilsa Kathleen Tudor, 22, of Phoenix, were indicted in connection with this scheme in July 2007. Perez pleaded guilty to one felony count of solicitation to commit fraudulent schemes and artifices, and Tudor pleaded guilty to one felony count of theft in September 2008. Perez was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison in November 2008, and Tudor was sentenced to three years probation at a hearing held in December 2008.   

According to court documents, between in December 2006 and January 2007, Magana, an employee of Friendly House, systematically stole checks made out to Friendly House from the Arizona Department of Economic Security. She allegedly passed those checks to Perez and Tudor, who deposited them in fraudulent bank accounts set up as part of the scheme and intended to resemble accounts held by Friendly House.  

The indictments are a result of a joint investigation by the Attorney General’s Office and U.S. Postal Inspection Service.  Assistant Attorney General Andrei Cherny is prosecuting this case in Maricopa County Superior Court. 

Samples of the stolen checks are attached and available on the Attorney General’s Web site. For additional information, contact Anne Hilby at (602) 542-8019.