Woman charged with posing as OSHA trainer

April 14, 2010 

A 52-year-old Fresno woman has been booked into the Fresno County Jail after allegedly bilking seven construction companies in Fresno County out of thousands of dollars by posing as a trainer with the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

She faces 50 felony counts of grand theft, burglary, diversion of labor funds and theft by false pretenses.

The woman was arrested in Texas last month by U.S. marshals who had tracked her through Nevada and Washington after she left the Fresno area.

Officials of a Clovis construction company contacted the Clovis Police Department after the woman, posing as a Cal-OSHA trainer, collected $35,000 as a fine for alleged safety violations.

During the past six months, police spokeswoman Janet Stoll-Lee said, the woman was suspected of bilking firms out of nearly $500,000 in phony fines and of conducting fake training classes for a fee to clear up alleged violations.

Five other cases are being investigated by Fresno police, and one case is under investigation by the Fresno County Sheriff's Office.