A man who got officials at Prestwick Golf Club to donate $2,500 for a phony charity event has been charged with felony theft by swindle.
Todd Allen Rocha, 54, faces up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
According to the criminal complaint:
On May 21, a manager at Prestwick contacted police to report that staff had agreed to host a celebrity golf tournament and had given organizers a $2,500 check for the event.
But the manager later learned that Rocha was not associated with the charity and officials there did not know of any planned golf tournament.
The manager told police she had several meetings with Rocha and issued a check from Prestwick to the charity on Feb. 8; it was cashed Feb. 14.
A contract—signed by the golf course owner and Rocha—was drawn up for the event, and Woodbury police learned there were misspellings in it and had the incorrect address for the charity. The event was scheduled for June.
Once the check was issued, Prestwick management had difficulty contacting Rocha, and officials from the charity said he was not one of their representatives or employees.
Woodbury police tracked the check, and found it had been deposited at a bank in Medina, Minn., in an account named “Hybridia Foundation” opened by Lu Maanum, aka Dr. Lu Magnum.
She then wired $1,500 to an Apaulo Music Productions account in California. Rocha is an authorized user of that account, and Maanum told police Rocha gave her the check from Prestwick.