true-sf-giants-new-era-cap.jpgA former San Francisco Giants payroll manager is due in federal court at the end of next month to face accusations that she embezzled more than $1.5 million from the team.

Robin O’Connor, 41, of American Canyon, is charged in a federal criminal complaint with wire fraud and fraud in connection with a computer.

She was dismissed from her job on July 6 after Giants officials discovered the alleged embezzlement, according to an FBI affidavit filed with the complaint in federal court in San Francisco on July 7.

FBI special agent Jason Richards said in the affidavit that O’Connor admitted to the Giants officials on July 6 that she had diverted $608,562 from the accounts of two Giants employees.

She accompanied a Giants executive to her bank and repaid that amount, the affidavit said.

But further review by the Giants immediately afterward indicated that the total amount O’Connor allegedly embezzled from the accounts of several Giants employees in the past year was more than $1.5 million, Richards said.

The team issued a statement saying, “Last month, the San Francisco Giants discovered evidence of possible embezzlement by our former payroll manager, Robin O’Connor, which resulted in her dismissal.”

The team said executives immediately notified federal prosecutors and said they have has been asked to make no further comment during the investigation.

O’Connor is currently free on $500,000 bail. A hearing before a federal magistrate in San Francisco on Sept. 30 will be either a preliminary hearing on the complaint or an arraignment if the complaint is replaced by an indictment.

O’Connor’s federal public defender, Rita Bosworth, was not immediately available for comment.

Richards said in the affidavit that the alleged embezzlement came to light after executives discovered a letter allegedly forged by O’Connor on July 5.

The letter was sent to Bank of America as part of an application for a loan for a residential property in San Diego.

It allegedly said that O’Connor had received bonuses of $300,0000 for her “outstanding contributions to our Major League Baseball team and Front Office during the 2010 season that assisted us accomplishing our goal of winning the 2010 World Series.”

The letter appeared to have been signed by the team’s human relations manager, but after being contacted by the bank, Giants executives determined that the signature was forged, the affidavit said.

Richards said in the affidavit that O’Connor confessed to team officials on July 6 that she forged the letter.

The affidavit said a review of bank records showed that money from O’Connor’s bank accounts had been used to pay for automobile loans, including payment for a BMW.

Julia Cheever, Bay City News

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