Bookkeeper admits stealing $545K from pizza chain

guiltyVISTA, Calif. — A former bookkeeper who embezzled more than $545,000 from the Leucadia Pizzeria chain pleaded guilty Wednesday to felony charges.

Susan Dawn Seibert, 49, will be sentenced to four years in prison on July 24. She pleaded guilty to one count each of embezzlement and forgery and admitted an allegation that she took more than $500,000 from her employer.

Authorities suspected that Seibert forged checks to herself during her four years with the company. The defendant quit her job last year when she learned that the restaurant planned to audit the books, according to Deputy District Attorney Anna Winn.

The audit showed that Seibert had written 172 checks to herself from the Leucadia Pizzeria account, Winn said, adding that the checks were forged with an owner’s signature.

Winn said Seibert covered up the embezzlement by listing legitimate vendors as the recipients of the checks.

Seibert told the Leucadia Pizzeria owners that she took the money to pay back a previous employer who had sued her for embezzlement, Winn said.

Leucadia Pizzeria has stores in Encinitas, La Jolla and Rancho Santa Fe.