UCLA Royce Hall
UCLA's Royce Hall. MyNewsLA photo by Clancy O'Dessky

A Carson woman who worked as a fund manager for UCLA’s history department surrendered Friday to begin serving a three-year state prison term in connection with her no contest plea to stealing more than $300,000 from the university through fraudulent purchase orders and travel reimbursements.

Diana Fonseca, now 38, initially pleaded no contest last July to six felony counts of grand theft, but four of those counts were dismissed at her sentencing last month after she paid more than $338,000 in restitution to UCLA, according to Deputy District Attorney Jeffrey Stodel.

Fonseca also admitted an aggravated white-collar crime enhancement.

Officials in UCLA’s history department discovered in July 2018 that Fonseca had created fraudulent purchase orders for electronic equipment, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Fonseca also submitted 45 fraudulent travel reimbursements for herself between May 2013 and October 2017, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

“Public employees have a financial responsibility to the people they serve. This criminal conduct drained resources from the history department that could have been used to benefit students and fulfill the university’s academic mission,” District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement last summer.

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