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Urban Decay executive charged with transferring more than $1 million in company money to his personal accounts

An executive for an Orange County-based cosmetics company is facing felony charges after authorities allege he transferred more than $1 million from the business into his personal accounts.
Ranjeet Reddy Paladugo, the vice president of finance for Urban Decay, was charged Thursday with felony grand theft and money laundering, as well as sentencing enhancements for aggravated white-collar crime and property loss of more than $200,000, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.
Prosecutors said Paladugo, a 40-year-old Irvine resident, set up fictitious business accounts at various banks, using names similar to those of Urban Decay’s business partners.
On July 17, prosecutors allege, Paladugo authorized a $598,500 transfer from Urban Decay to one of the fictitious business accounts, then to his own personal bank account. That was followed, prosecutors said, by a second transfer of the same $598,500 amount authorized by Paladugo from Urban Decay to a different fictitious company.
Weeks later, Paladugo is suspected of wiring the money back from the second transaction into an Urban Decay account, according to the DA’s office.
A bank noticed what they believed to be suspicious activity, and alerted Urban Decay’s corporate security. The Newport Beach Police Department was notified, and investigators arrested Paladugo on Tuesday, Dec. 5.
Paladugo appeared in court on Thursday, but did not enter a plea. He is scheduled to return to court on Dec. 12.
If convicted, Paladugo faces up to 13 years and four months in prison. He was being held on $1.2 million bail, according to the DA’s office.
Source: Oc Register

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