Clinic business

Santa Ana man stole $1 million in COVID-19 tests from clinic, police say – Orange County Register

A Santa Ana man accused of stealing more than $1 million worth of COVID-19 tests from the clinic where he worked is apparently on the run, police said.

Santa Ana police say they tried to arrest Carlitos Peralta, 33, on Feb. 9 after his employer, the Covid Clinic at 3401 W. MacArthur Boulevard, discovered he was secretly redirecting large bulk shipments of tests from their office to their home.

The company reported that Peralta put a colleague’s name as the sender on one of the shipments that went to his residence, Cpl said. Maria Lopez, police spokeswoman. After the colleague alerted the company, they called the police.

“This employee got a notification and said, ‘Wait, what? and that’s how they started to investigate,” Lopez said.

But Santa Ana detectives who went to Peralta’s home on Feb. 9 couldn’t find him. They said in a statement on Thursday that detectives were asking the public for information on his whereabouts.

On Thursday, it was unclear exactly how many tests would have been stolen. Police said they believe Peralta rerouted around 100 different shipments, each of which contained numerous boxes of the tests.

Police were unable to estimate the number of tests in each box. But the total estimated value of the shipments was $1,000,575.

The alleged scheme could have unfolded over several months — the company told police the first missing shipment was rerouted in December 2021, Lopez said.

Police also declined to say whether any of the shipments had been recovered.

Officials are asking anyone with information about Peralta to contact detectives at (714) 245-8551.