Danville Police Detectives concluded a months-long investigation into missing funds at St. Isidore's Church and filed charges against three persons associated with the church.
Police Chief Steve Simpkins said the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office has charged Kathleen Dake, 58 of Blackhawk; Evelyn Peinado, 64, of Alamo; and Virgilio Lukban, 46, of Danville with 13 counts of embezzlement.
Police were first made aware of the missing funds in August 2010 and began an investigation. Simpkins said the investigation revealed that Dake, Peinado and Lukban stole approximately $360,000 from the church through fraudulent use of credit cards. Dake is also charged with stealing approximately $220,000 more through using checks from St. Isidore's for personal expenses.
After being taken into custody by police Monday, the three were transported to the Martinez Detention Facility. Dake is being held on $433,000 bond and Lukban on $134,000 bond. Peinado was arraigned in Walnut Creek Court and was released on her own recognizance.
"The Diocese intends to seek restitution of the stolen funds from the perpetrators and if necessary financial recovery through the courts," wrote Mike Brown of the Diocese of Oakland. " We are confident that all stolen funds will be returned to the parish through legal redress or its insurance coverage."
During the investigation, the Diocese determined that St. Isidore did not have sufficient internal controls in place to detect and prevent such a high-level, sophisticated crime. The parish has since hired a bookkeeper and an accounting manager to "insure appropriate financial administration for cash receipts, disbursements, payroll and financial statement preparation."