A Fairfax County, Virginia, man has pleaded guilty to embezzling $4 million in what authorities described as one of the largest white-collar fraud cases in the county’s history.
Carlos Camacho, 59, pleaded guilty Tuesday to one felony count each of embezzlement and forgery, according to Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano.
Camacho, who was a property manager for the family-owned A+A LLC rental company, was indicted in May on several counts of embezzlement and forgery.
Camacho, who has family ties to the company owners, was accused of falsifying power of attorney documents that allowed him out take out loans on the business’ properties, which he then pocketed for personal use, according to authorities. He was also accused of embezzling some of the monthly rent generated by the properties.
The business owners were left with the bill, “and they were faced with the threat of losing those properties,” Descano said.
Under the terms of the plea deal, Camacho could serve up to nine months of incarceration, which Descano said is in line with sentencing guidelines. In addition, Camacho has agreed to testify in the business owner’s ongoing civil lawsuit against him.
Descano said the business owners were on board with the plea agreement.
The guilty plea from Camacho “is going to be critical for them in their civil case,” said Descano, who added, “Getting this plea agreement allows us to get accountability. Mr. Camacho does face some jail time. But at the same time, we’re really serving the victims here.”
Descano, a former federal prosecutor who specialized in complex financial crimes before becoming the commonwealth’s attorney, said he’s committed to fighting white-collar crime in the county, saying it was not highly prioritized by his predecessor.
“White-collar frauds can create real victims and can ruin businesses and can ruin families,” Descano said. “So these are real crimes.”
When the case was first indicted, it was believed Camacho had stolen about $2 million, but that figure climbed to more than $4 million as investigators continued combing through financial records.
Descano declined to say how Camacho spent the embezzled money.
According to the indictment, the fraud was carried out over a two-year period, between June 2017 and June 2019.
“He was able to get the victims to sign limited powers-of-attorney, which Mr. Camacho then changed to be full powers-of-attorneys … and that allowed him to exercise control that he never should have had,” Descano said.
The business owners only learned of the fraud when they received word from the bank that their properties were being foreclosed on, he said.
Sentencing in the case has not yet been scheduled.
WTOP has reached out to the attorney for Camacho listed in court documents.