SAN FRANCISCO -- A construction worker from Walnut Creek has been charged with embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from his former employer, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

Randy LaQuay, 55, was charged Tuesday with grand theft and forgery among other felony crimes on suspicion of embezzling more than $219,000 from Ryan Associates, a San Francisco construction company, said San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón.

LaQuay has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The allegations came to the attention of LaQuay's former supervisor just days after he quit working for the company, Gascón said.

LaQuay had been a senior level accountant who worked at the company for more than 25 years. His duties included handling financial aspects for the company and paying its taxes, the prosecutor said.

Court papers revealed the state's Employment Development Department contacted LaQuay's former supervisor and said they had not received tax payments from the company. Authorities said a subsequent investigation revealed the suspect had been recording checks as being issued to EDD when instead he had been writing the checks to himself.

LaQuay was arrested on Sept. 21 in Contra Costa County, and was free Tuesday on $200,000 bail.

He was arraigned Monday and pleaded not guilty to the felony charges, prosecutors said.

His next court date is set Jan. 9.

Contact Natalie Neysa Alund at 510-293-2469. Follow her at Twitter.com/natatliealund.