Federal grand jury indicts Ocean View woman on charges of embezzling $1 million+ from ailing former employer

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A federal grand jury returned an indictment Thursday charging an Ocean View woman with embezzling more than $1 million from her former employer.

According to the indictment, Joan Donald, 54, worked as a bookkeeper for Dovetail, Inc., described as a high-end interior design company based in Bethany Beach.

Over the course of at least seven years, Donald took advantage of her access to the company’s accounts, as well as the ailing health of Dovetail’s elderly owner, to drain funds from Dovetail, prosecutors stated.

Bank records show that Donald used Dovetail’s funds to pay for her personal expenses, including purchasing vehicles and taking trips to Disneyworld.

U.S. Attorney for Delaware Davis Weiss commented on the charges, “This defendant abused her position of trust and took advantage of a vulnerable, elderly victim. After financing her lifestyle with stolen funds for years, the time has come for her to answer for her actions.”

Donald is charged with wire fraud and tax evasion. If convicted, she faces up to 20 years in prison. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties.

The FBI Baltimore Division’s Dover Resident Agency and IRS Criminal Investigation, with assistance from the Bethany Beach Police Department, conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher R. Howland is prosecuting the case.

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