Ivy Valdez, Jeffco woman convicted of embezzlement, Craigslist rental scam, gets 8 year sentence

DENVER - A Jefferson County woman, convicted of embezzling from her employer and engaging in a Craigslist rental scam that bilked four people, was sentenced Tuesday to 8 years in prison.  

Prosecutors said between November 2012 and February 2013, Ivy Marie Valdez, 31, stole a total of $90,000 from Colorado Roofing Specialists in Lakewood, where she was employed as an office assistant and bookkeeper. 

She created fake invoices, paid herself extra wages and fraudulently transacted 15 checks in large amounts, depositing the funds into her personal account, according to authorities.

On March 10, Valdez pleaded guilty to the theft and forgery charges related to the case.

In April 2013, prosecutors said Valdez was being evicted from an apartment in Lakewood for non-payment of rent when she scammed people out of more than $6,000 as she fraudulently posed as a landlord and advertised to rent that apartment to them through Craigslist.

Each of the victims contacted Valdez, who was using the name Rachel Dominguez, because they were interested in renting the apartment. 

Prosecutors said she met with them and accepted thousands of dollars in cash as down payment for rents on the apartment. Valdez provided fraudulent lease agreements for each victim to sign and gave them keys that didn't work.

The victims then contacted Lakewood Police who began their investigation. Their losses exceeded $6,100. 

Valdez pled guilty to theft in the bilking case and was sentenced to four years in prison, to be served concurrently with the first case.

Investigators said Valdez was on intensive supervision probation in Adams County for identity theft when she committed the new offenses. She also has a similar conviction in Denver for theft from another employer.

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