Former co-owner of Richmond manufacturing company charged in wire fraud scheme

A federal grand jury in Oakland has charged the former co-owner of a Richmond manufacturing company with wire fraud and money laundering in connection with a scheme to divert tens of thousands of dollars from the company to his personal bank accounts.   

Neil Divers, 64, of Chico, was charged with five counts of wire fraud and two counts of money laundering, according to a joint announcement Wednesday from the Department of Justice and the IRS.   

Divers was co-owner of Kodiak Precision Inc., a machined component manufacturer in Richmond.   

Prosecutors said other co-owners of the company discovered in 2015 that Divers was taking money from the company without authorization. The company instituted controls to prevent this from continuing, and Divers remained a co-owner.   

Despite the controls, prosecutors allege Divers orchestrated a fraudulent scheme to get around the controls and diverted additional money to his personal accounts.   

On Wednesday, authorities arrested Divers in Texas and brought him to Oakland for a court appearance.