Former dental office manager arrested for grand theft

A Naples woman has been arrested and charged with taking funds from a Bonita Springs dental office where she served as office manager.

The arrest stems from a Nov. 8, 2005, report about an alleged grand theft by an employee. The incident occurred at Gulfshore Dental, 9136 Bonita Beach Road, Bonita Springs. Lee County sheriff's deputies responded.

The complainant, Dr. Steven Kovacs, told deputies that the business had recently discovered that an employee was stealing money from the business by using her personal Visa debit card. The business had suffered a loss between $10,000 and $20,000. Due to the nature of the incident, detectives with the Lee County Sheriff's Office Economics Crimes Unit, along with the State Attorney's Office, were notified and instructed to assume the investigation.

The investigation revealed that the office manager, Kerri Spagnuolo, was using her Visa debit card to withdraw money out of Gulfshore Dental's bank account. Spagnuolo reportedly used the credit card machine in the office to transfer funds to her personal account. Bank records show that more than $46,000 from Gulfshore Dental's account had been removed between March 2005 and October 2005.

Gulfshore Dental's cash receipts and bank deposits confirmed money was stolen from the daily deposits. Spagnuolo was solely responsible for the daily deposits and handling of cash. Bank and business records confirmed Gulfshore Dental suffered a financial loss of more than $35,000 through stolen bank deposits. Computer records for the business showed Spagnuolo attempted to hide her theft by altering/deleting cash entries for monies paid by patients. As a result of Spagnuolo's theft, Gulfshore Dental suffered a total financial loss of more than $80,000 between March 2005 through October 2005, reports said.

Spagnuolo, 28, of 15461 Cortona Way, Naples, was charged with grand theft over $20,000 and under $100,000, a second degree felony. She was arrested Wednesday and transported to the Lee County Jail.

© 2006 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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