April 2, 2024
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Man gets prison for bilking $1M from Thousand Oaks psychiatrist

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A Whittier man was sentenced March 21 to 7 years, 8 months in state prison for bilking a Thousand Oaks psychiatrist out of more than $1 million.

David Syner, 62, was also ordered to pay $987,250 plus interest, the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office said.

Syner pled guilty in Ventura County Superior Court on June 22, 2023, to 13 counts of grand theft.

Prosecutors said Syner, acting as a money manager, in 2014 volunteered to help the psychiatrist with his finances. 

The victim gave Syner, who had befriended him, control of his financial accounts so Syner could manage the victim’s business affairs. 

Between 2014 and August 2018, Syner stole more than $1 million from the victim.

Syner utilized more than 13 schemes to defraud the victim, according to prosecutors.

Syner used the money on luxury goods and services for himself and his fiancée, which included first-class travel, entertainment, tuition, rent, health care insurance, cosmetic surgery, and car payments.

In August 2018, when the victim realized Syner was stealing from him, he hired a CPA to uncover how much money was taken.

By October 2018, district attorney’s investigators joined the probe and in 2020, they began using an in-house forensic accountant to track the money.

“This case emphasizes the need to verify and supervise when allowing another person to access your financial records, regardless of your relationship,” Senior Deputy District Attorney Howard Wise, who prosecuted the case, said in a press release.

“No matter how smart you are, you can become a victim when you trust but don’t verify,” Wise, a member of the District Attorney’s Fraud and Technology Crimes Unit, said.

email: mharris@pacbiztimes.com