A former corporate controller was sentenced Monday to five years and eight months in state prison for stealing $550,000 from his employer and using the money to invest in stocks with a personal E-Trade account.
Nathan Melvin Gilliland, 30, of Ladera Ranch pleaded guilty Monday to one felony count of computer fraud, one felony count of grand theft, and one felony count of identity theft with a sentencing enhancement allegation for aggravated white collar crime over $500,000.
In addition to his prison sentence, the defendant was ordered to pay $550,000 in restitution.
Had Gilliland been a better investor, the restitution might not sting so much. He lost almost all of it playing the stock market.
Between January and July 2010, Gilliland worked as a corporate controller in Irvine for Avastra USA, Inc., and its subsidiary, Sleep Medicine Institute Management. He had access to the company’s online bank accounts and diverted funds online from the corporate bank account to his personal bank account. Over the course of six months, Gilliland used his position as controller to take $550,000 from his employer. He then deposited those funds into an E-Trade brokerage account for personal use. The defendant lost $500,000 in the stock market investments he made.
When contacted by an Avastra USA, Inc. representative June 29, 2010, Gilliland told the representative that he only had $50,000 of the funds left in his E-Trade brokerage account. The theft was reported to Irvine Police Department, which investigated the case.
Deputy District Attorney Daniel Underwood of the Major Fraud Unit prosecuted this case.