Santa Ana Boat Dealer Jailed on Theft, Embezzlement Charges

A Santa Ana boat dealer has been arrested on suspicion of theft and embezzlement for diverting to his own use more than $50,000 collected in the sale of five boats.

Wayland Walter Parisia, 53, was arrested Wednesday by an agent of the state Department of Motor Vehicles and booked into Orange County Jail on two counts of grand theft and three counts of embezzlement.

All five incidents occurred in 1988. The DMV, which has jurisdiction over boat dealers, launched an investigation in March when it received a complaint against Parisia, according to JoAnn Black, supervisor of the investigative staff.


She said that Parisia, through a holding company, owns California Master Craft at 1214 N. Harbor Blvd. He also owned a Corona boat dealership that has been closed down.

Black said Parisia has been operating under Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings since 1986. She said he filed petitions to reorganize both dealerships under the court’s protection from creditors.

The DMV alleges that Parisia committed grand theft by selling two boats on consignment and failing to turn the money over to the owners.

One of the embezzlement counts is based on a complaint that Parisia accepted a used boat in trade and failed to pay off the balance owed to the original lender.

In two other instances of suspected embezzlement, Black said, Parisia obtained financing for the buyers of two new boats who subsequently returned the boats to his dealership. He then resold the boats with new financing, she said, without paying off the initial lenders.

Parisia was released Thursday on $50,000 bail pending arraignment.