Search This Blog

Monday, September 19, 2011

Former Orlando Fifth Third executive pleads guilty to tax charge stemming from embezzlement

A former assistant vice president at Fifth Third Bank in Orlando today pleaded guilty to a tax charge stemming from an embezzlment scheme at the bank, prosecutors said.

Nikki Christine Highfield, 39, of Maineville, Ohio, agreed to plead guilty to filing a false tax-related document. Prosecutors say she falsified income-tax forms by failing to declare the embezzled funds as income.

The government was cheated out of more than $24,000 in 2005 and nearly $22,000 in 2006 as a result, court documents show. Highfield's husband, whose name was on the jointly filed returns, was unaware of the scheme, the government said.

Highfield was assistant vice president and regional risk and administration manager at Fifth Third Bank from 2005 to 2008. She oversaw cashiers' checks the bank issued and reconciliation of the bank's account, court papers show.

Prosecutors say she made out cashiers' checks worth nearly $275,000 to herself and her creditors and covered them with other checks from the bank's account.

The crime is punishable by up to three years in prison, one year of probation and a fine. However, the government agreed to recommend that Highfield receive a lighter sentence.

As part of the plea agreement, reached in July, Highfield agreed not to work for a bank or credit union.

No comments:

Post a Comment