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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Two More Charged in Taupa Lithuanian Fraud Case

Two Ohio men were charged Tuesday for allegedly embezzling nearly $1.9 million in a massive fraud case that led to the collapse of the $23.6 million Taupa Lithuanian Credit Union in Cleveland in July 2013, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office in Cleveland.

Gary Chaney, 49, of Streetsboro, and Patrick Bruckman, 58, of Chester Township, both Cleveland suburbs, were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit theft or embezzlement from a credit union.

Bruckman and Chaney maintained personal accounts at the cooperative, as well as a corporate account for Network Systems Engineering a computer consulting firm they owned, according to the court documents.

These two men and four others including Alex Spirikaitis, Taupa Lithuanian’s former president/CEO, allegedly conspired to defraud the credit union from 2007 through 2013.

The fraud case caused a $33.5 million loss to NCUSIF, according to the NCUA Office of Inspector General’s material loss report.

Bruckman and Chaney allegedly wrote checks drawn on their personal and corporate accounts for which there were insufficient funds, court papers show.

Chaney withdrew approximately $241,000 from his personal account. Bruckman withdrew approximately $63,000 from his personal account. Both collectively withdrew $1.5 million from their corporate accounts for which there were insufficient funds. The total loss to the credit union was $1.8 million, federal prosecutors alleged.

Although Chaney and Bruckman did not have sufficient funds in their accounts to cover their withdrawals, Spirikaitis allowed the overdrafts to clear their accounts. Chaney and Bruckman also never submitted any credit applications or loan documentation for the money they received from Spirikaitis to cover their overdrafts, according to court documents.

Last week, John Struna, 51, of the Cleveland suburb of Concord Township, was indicted for allegedly embezzling $2.3 million from Taupa Lithuanian. He was indicted on one count each for conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, and making false statements. He also was indicted on four counts of money laundering.

Spirikaitis pleaded guilty in February to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

He admitted to embezzling $4.2 million from Taupa Lithuanian between 2001 and 2013. With the funds, he built a $1.6 million home in an affluent Cleveland suburb, paid for a stadium luxury suite at Cleveland Browns games and bought nine vehicles, according to court documents.

Spirikaitis is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 23.

Earlier this year, former teller Michael Ruksenas pleaded guilty to conspiring with Spirikaitis to embezzle more than $481,000 and former bookkeeper Vytas Apanavicius pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit embezzlement. He admitted to stealing nearly a million dollars from Taupa Lithuanian, with help from Spirikaitis.

In February, Ruksenas was sentenced to 17 months in federal prison. Apanavicius is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 28.

Federal prosecutors expect to charge a former credit union employee who has been identified only by the  initials, A.B., according to court documents.

The NCUA and the Ohio Department of Commerce took possession of Taupa Lithuanian in July 2013 and placed it into receivership because of insolvency. The Cleveland cooperative served about 1,150 members.

Embezzling Jacksonville banker sentenced to 5 years

Embezzling Jacksonville banker Christopher David Boston was sentenced to five years in prison Tuesday afternoon for embezzling at least $10.5 million from his job at Fifth Third Bank over a four-year period.
Boston, 40, pleaded guilty in March to bank fraud. He also must pay $2 million in restitution to the bank after he's released. He faced up to 30 years in prison and a $4.4 million fine.
Boston's sentencing was delayed last month after Senior U.S. District Judge Henry Lee Adams Jr. recused himself for an undisclosed reason. District Judge Brian Davis will handle the sentencing.
Boston had been free on bond and was recently allowed by a judge to travel to Ohio to help his parents with home repair issues before returning to Jacksonville for sentencing, court records show.
Boston operated a bank-fraud scheme that included stealing at least $10.5 million from one corporate account and transferring money from two individual accounts to cover the original thefts. The embezzlement occurred over 3 1/2 years ending in April 2013 at the Fifth Third Bank off San Jose Boulevard in north Mandarin.
A victim of the scheme whose husband lost and then got back nearly $6 million told the Times-Union that Boston’s actions devastated her family and refuted any notion of him being considered a Robin Hood-like character for helping his customers.
Court records show Boston used $210,000 to make $2,000 monthly mortgage payments on his family’s Mandarin home, install a backyard pool and for other expenses. The home on Emilys Crossing Court was turned over to Boston’s wife in a divorce last year, and Boston said he’s now living in another Mandarin home in the 11500 block of Summer Brook Court.
Prosecutors said Boston used the rest of the embezzled money to help his customers, and ultimately his own standing in the bank, with favors such as paying off troubled loans and making “off-book” loans to those whose applications had been denied.
The bank replenished the embezzled accounts and had arranged new loans with Boston’s customers, recovering all but about $2 million, which is federally insured, court records show.
Boston, never arrested, was asked to sign a $20,000 signature bond. Prosecutors didn’t seek detention since they considered him neither a threat to the community nor, with a 2-year-old son, a flight risk.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Lake County businessman recharged for embezzlement of $2.3 million from Taupa Lithuanian Credit Union in Cleveland

A federal grand jury has recharged a Lake County businessman, John Struna, in the embezzlement of $2.3 million from Taupa Lithuanian Credit Union of Cleveland.

The seven-count indictment charges Struna with seven counts of bank fraud, making false statements and money laundering. The indictment replaces a one-count, $2.5 million information filed against Struna in January.

Credit union CEO Alex Spirikaitis, former teller Michael Ruksenas and Vytas Apanavicius, a Mentor accountant, have been convicted of similar charges of defrauding the Taupa credit union, according to a news release from the office of Steven Dettelbach, U. S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

“This defendant is charged as part of a group that used others' hard earned savings as a personal piggy bank,” Dettelbach said in the release. “Mr. Struna’s greed has caught up with him with this indictment.”

The National Credit Union Administration and the Ohio Department of Commerce placed Taupa into receivership last year, due to its insolvency. The credit union had about 1,150 members and assets of approximately $24 million, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Defendant in Detroit Mortgage Fraud Conspiracy Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Bank Fraud in Michigan

In July of 2013, seven individuals were indicted for the roles they played in a Detroit mortgage fraud operation. Those who were indicted by a federal grand jury in the Eastern District Court of Michigan included Peter Allen, Suhail Hallak, Al Karana, Wasseem Shamoun, Joey Murad, Jeffrey Najor, and Jason Najor. The defendants were alleged to have used fraudulent information for the purpose of obtaining mortgage loans from banks and lending institutions beginning in January of 2006, and continuing until December of 2008. muB6xyw

It was announced by the Department of Justice on August 12, 2014 that Wasseem Shamoun has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud. Shamoun pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. According to the July 2013 indictment, the scheme resulted in area banks and financial institutions paying out fraudulent mortgage loan funds that totaled approximately $10 million.

Five of the seven defendants were charged with 20 counts of bank fraud each, including Shamoun. Several agencies assisted in the investigation including the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), the IRS – Criminal Investigation, and the FBI. According to the release issued by the Department of Justice, Shamoun was personally responsible for a loss of approximately $394,000 to local financial institutions.

Shamoun and his co-defendants are said to have devised a scheme in which property was purchased in amounts ranging from $5,000 to $40,000 per home. The defendants then recruited straw buyers who would be paid a fee to submit fraudulent home mortgage loan applications. The prices paid to the defendants by straw buyers for single family homes ranged from $90,000 to $120,000 per home, with the defendants paying themselves $10,000 to $50,000 commissions.

Shamoun is scheduled to be sentenced on December 2, and faces a $1 million fine and statutory maximum prison term of 30 years for his role in the conspiracy.

Federal crimes such as conspiracy to defraud financial institutions in schemes such as the one described above are extremely serious. Individuals who are accused of mortgage fraud conspiracy or other federal crimes must consult with an experienced and aggressive Michigan criminal defense attorney in order to obtain the best possible results.

Broken Arrow Woman Sentenced for Bank Fraud and Tax Evasion in Oklahoma

A former manager of a credit union was sentenced on Tuesday to serve 27 months for each count of bank fraud and tax evasion, announced U.S. Attorney Danny C. Williams Sr. for the Northern District of Oklahoma and Special Agent in Charge R. Damon Rowe of the Dallas field office for the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation.

Eva Barroso, 54, of Broken Arrow, was sentenced to serve 27 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Chief Judge Gregory K Frizzell for one count each of bank fraud and tax evasion. At the time of the scheme, Barroso worked as a commercial services manager for Oklahoma Central Credit Union (OCCU) where her duties included marketing and servicing commercial loans. The Court entered a criminal forfeiture money judgment against the defendant in the amount of $238,177.42 representing proceeds obtained as a result of his bank fraud scheme. Barroso was also ordered to make restitution in the amount of $238,177.42 to OCCU and $57,360.50 to the Internal Revenue Service.

According to court documents, from July 2, 2009 to March 19, 2012, as part of the scheme, Barroso fabricated at least three false loans in the name of nominee entities and individuals without the knowledge and authorization of the purported borrower. Barroso admitted that she made various material false representations in obtaining these loans. She used the proceeds of these loans for her own personal benefit, including making ATM withdrawals at various casinos. To further the scheme, Barroso used some of the money to make payments on prior loans.

In addition, during the 2010 calendar year, Barroso willfully evaded a large part of income tax by failing to report to the Internal Revenue Service a total of $152,098.13 which was the money she fraudulently obtained from the scheme.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jeffrey Gallant and Catherine Depew on behalf of the United States.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Former Bank Adjuster Pleads Guilty To Stealing More Than $400,000 in Conn.

 A former bank employee has pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of embezzlement from a federally-insured bank, admitting she used her position to embezzle more than $400,000 to pay debts.

Maria Rosa Esteves, 40, of Bridgeport waived her right to an indictment with her plea Thursday, the U.S. Attorney's office said.

According to court documents, Esteves was employed by People's United Bank from 1993 to 2014. Starting in 2006, she worked primarily in the bank's Adjustments Department, rising to the position of lead adjuster. Her responsibilities included arranging for bank cashiers' checks to be issued to customers whose accounts need to be adjusted, the U.S. Attorney's office said.

Esteves stole more than $400,000 from the bank by using cashiers' checks that she would then use to pay people or organizations to whom she owed money, such as her utility company, homeowner's insurance company and mortgage providers, the documents show.

Esteves also embezzled money by depositing cashiers' checks into bank accounts she controlled, said U.S. Attorney's spokesman Thomas Carson.

In all, Esteves misappropriated more than 300 cashiers' checks, he said.

She faces a maximum prison term of 30 years, a fine of up to $1 million and an order of restitution when she is sentenced in U.S. District Court in Hartford Nov. 7.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Waldbusser sentenced for bank fraud in Iowa

Former Wells Fargo bank manager Nicholas Waldbusser was sentenced Thursday to 21 months in prison for bank fraud.

Judge Sara Darrow said the theater enthusiast's passion for acting likely helped Mr. Waldbusser conceal a $200,000 embezzlement scheme. She described the 26-year-old man as charismatic, well-liked and intelligent -- but also manipulative of people's trust.

"You were able to draw upon your acting skills to deceive other individuals," she told Mr. Waldbusser.

In April, Mr. Waldbusser pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court, Rock Island, to one count of bank fraud in exchange for the dismissal of 14 similar counts. On Thursday he was ordered to repay approximately $197,000 in stolen funds -- the result of 18 months of embezzlement from the Wells Fargo branch at 4218 Avenue of the Cities, Moline, prosecutors said.

As branch supervisor, Mr. Waldbusser kept track of bank funds and was responsible for the audit process, which he manipulated in order to disguise the thefts, prosecutors said.

Calling his actions "a series of almost daily mistakes," Judge Darrow said she felt obliged to use Mr. Waldbusser as an example to deter others from similar crimes. She ordered him to self-report Sept. 22 to start his sentence, adding she would recommend an in-state minimum security men's prison.

Mr. Waldbusser spoke briefly in court to thank family and investigators who worked on the case.

"I have learned my lesson," he said.

At the start of the hearing, prosecuting attorney Don Allegro expressed frustration at what he perceived were excuses -- including depression, anxiety and struggles with self-identity -- given by the defense for Mr. Waldbusser's behavior.

"He lived a lavish lifestyle," Mr. Allegro said, citing drugs, vacations, prostitutes, basement renovations and expensive suits Mr. Waldbusser bought with swindled funds. Mr. Allegro also said authorities found $1,900 in cash under a mattress when they raided Mr. Waldbusser's home.

Mr. Waldbusser may have been a "nice guy" without prior criminal history, Mr. Allegro said. "But how much money do you have to steal before you get sent to prison -- not because you're a bad person, but to send a message?"

Mr. Allegro advocated for a nonspecific amount of prison time. He said he believed that, had Mr. Waldbusser not been caught by Wells Fargo security, the thefts would have continued.

He said Mr. Waldbusser also conspired with a bank teller to help in the scheme, but authorities chose not to prosecute the teller who no longer works at the bank.

Mr. Waldbusser's attorney, Federal Public Defender George Taseff, asked Judge Darrow not to make his client's case about going after "the Enron's and the white-collar guys." That was a fight for lawmakers, he said.

Mr. Taseff said the recent death of Robin Williams renewed a national dialog about depression faced privately by many performers. Mr. Waldbusser had been "living in a way that was destined to crash and burn. It was unstable," he said, adding his client is seeking counseling.

Mr. Taseff scrolled through a slideshow of pictures in the courtroom depicting Mr. Waldbusser in high school and local theater productions. They included a copy of a May 2011 article from The Dispatch/Rock Island Argus in which Mr. Waldbusser was interviewed about his role in a community show.

"I love creating a person that is fictional and that nobody knows," Mr. Waldbusser was quoted as saying. "I love to tell a story; that's what theater is, creating a story and telling it live."

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Bank officer indicted on federal charges in Oklahoma

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma Mark Green announced Wednesday that Richard Paul Geurin has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Muskogee on five charges: bank theft, embezzlement and misapplication, false entry in the books of a federally insured bank, bank fraud and forfeiture.
Geurin, who served as an officer of First Bank and Trust of Duncan’s Ardmore location, is accused of committing the crimes between Feb. 3, 2011, until on or about Feb. 24 of this year. The indictment alleges Geurin “with intent to injure and defraud the said First Bank & Trust of Duncan, Oklahoma, willfully misapplied, embezzled, abstracted, and purloined more than $1,000.00 of the moneys, funds, assets or securities entrusted to the custody or care of First Bank & Trust of Duncan, Oklahoma, in that the defendant withdrew cash from the accounts of certain bank customers and misapplied, embezzled, abstracted and purloined the funds for his own use or benefit with the intent to deceive an officer of First Bank & Trust of Duncan, Oklahoma.” In addition, the indictment accuses the longtime Ardmore resident of knowingly making “false entries in the books, reports, or statements of First Bank & Trust of Duncan, Oklahoma,” and creating “false transaction documents showing customers withdrawing cash from customer accounts, when in truth and in fact, as the defendant well knew, the withdrawals from customer accounts were by and for the benefit of the defendant.”
The charges are based on an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation which began in February. At the time, rumors circulated Geurin had been escorted from his office and was removed from his position.
Multiple attempts Wednesday to speak with Glen Jones, Carter County president of First Bank & Trust of Duncan, concerning the federal indictment against Geurin, were unsuccessful.
If convicted, Geurin faces up to 30 years in a federal prison and/or a fine of up to $1 million.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Woman uses PayPal to embezzle $50k from Dexter business

Deputies from the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office are investigating a woman who they believe embezzled tens of thousands of dollars from a Dexter business over the period of 18 months.

Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Geoffrey Fox said the bookkeeper from Northern Pizza Equipment Inc., 8020 Grand St., is being investigated for embezzling about $50,000. Fox said the embezzlement was reported on Feb. 12, and went on for between a year and a year and a half.

Embezzlement cases can often take a long time to investigate, due to the amount of records needed from financial institutions, and it appears this case is no different, Fox said.

The case has not been turned over to the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office because investigators are still waiting for bank, PayPal and other financial records, he said.

“It looks like they have more work to do,” he said.

Fox said the woman, who is not being identified because she has not been charged, had access to Northern Pizza Equipment’s PayPal account.

She would transfer money from the business’ PayPal account into a different business account, Fox said. The woman was the owner of the unnamed business receiving the funds.

Fox declined to release more identifying information about the woman on Tuesday.

A message was left with Northern Pizza Equipment Inc. on Tuesday afternoon seeking comment for this story.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Manager who wore fake bomb to pull off bank heist gets 9 years in California

A woman who conspired with her boyfriend in 2012 to steal $565,500 from the East L.A. bank where she worked by strapping a fake bomb to herself to simulate a kidnapping was sentenced Wednesday to nine years in federal prison, federal prosecutors said.

Aurora Barrera, 33, and the ex-boyfriend, 36-year-old Reyes "Ray" Vega, were found guilty of multiple bank robbery offenses in March after a weeklong  trial. The jury found the couple guilty of conspiracy to commit bank robbery and bank robbery.

The jury also found that Vega and Barrera committed the robbery by assaulting a bank employee with a dangerous weapon -- the fake explosive.

Vega orchestrated a plan in which Barrera pretended to be kidnapped and forced to rob the Bank of America branch where she worked in September 2012.

As she acted in fear that the fake bomb might explode, Barrera took money from a safe and dumped it outside, where it was picked up by an accomplice, Richard Menchaca. Another accomplice, Bryan Perez, then took the cash, which was split among them at a hotel later that day, according to authorities.

After the heist, a Los Angeles County sheriff's bomb robot was used to pry the fake device off of Berrera.

Later, however, investigators determined she knew her supposed kidnappers and the group was eventually arrested.

Menchaca and Perez pleaded guilty and testified at the trial of Vega and Barrera.

Menchaca was sentenced Monday to five years of probation with 1,500 hours of custody time served on weekends. Perez is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 18.with 1,500 hours of custody time served on weekends.

The group has also been ordered to pay joint restitution in the amount of $557,300.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Sheffield Lake, Ohio man charged with embezzling $2.9 million from Medical Mutual

Joseph F. Satava, III, age 69, was charged in a criminal information with one count of theft of embezzlement in connection with health case.

Satava embezzled approximately $2.9 million from his employer, Medical Mutual, between August 1997 and November 2013, according to the information.

Satava began working for Medical Mutual in 1971, and held the position of Manager of Credit and Collections for the past 20 years. In this capacity, he had the authority and managerial discretion to request and approve checks in amounts up to $5,000. During his tenure, Satava discovered a way to use this managerial authority to create reimbursement checks that he could then embezzle, steal, and convert, undetected, to his own personal use, according to the information.

To accomplish his embezzlement, Satava reviewed weekly printouts of the company's accounts receivable trial balance statements to identify new companies that had signed contracts for insurance coverage. The weekly printouts included the amounts submitted by each company as the first payment for the insurance coverage.  These payments were referred to as "binder payments." Each binder payment was credited to the finance division's "Binder Suspense Account." At the end of each month, each company payment was then credited to the appropriate client-specific revenue account, according to information.

During most weeks, Satava selected between two and four companies from this printout that made binder payments under $5,000 and created a reimbursement check in the exact amount of each respective customer check submitted to the company. He caused the reimbursement check to be created by completing a company check reimbursement form. On the form, Satava listed an employee of the client company as payee, and requested payment in the amount of the company's binder check. He stated on the form that insurance coverage had been denied as the reason for the requested reimbursement.

To conceal his embezzlement, Satava did not charge each reimbursement to the Binder Suspense Account. Instead, he charged the checks to an account that handled several billions of dollars of revenue each year. As such, the checks created by Satava were immaterial in amount relative to the volume of funds passing through this account, so the checks were not detected. Because the reimbursement checks were not charged against the account into which the binder payments were deposited, the coverage for each client company still went into effect, according to the information.
To negotiate the check, Satava forged the name of the payee appearing on the reimbursement check that he used without authorization. After he forged each check, he countersigned his own name beneath the forged name. Defendant used ATMs to deposit each check into his own personal bank account to avoid scrutiny from bank officials regarding the third party checks, according to the information.

Satava produced at least 1,382 reimbursement checks that he forged, countersigned, and deposited during his tenure as the manager of credit and collections, according to the information.
Satava used the embezzled funds to pay for living expenses that were otherwise beyond his means, such as furniture and other household items, his adult son's personal expenses, a car loan, travel and personal vacations and a retirement home on Lake Erie, according to the information.
If convicted, the defendant's sentence will be determined by the court after a review of factors unique to the case, including the defendant's prior criminal record, if any, the defendant's role in the offense, and the characteristics of the violation.  In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Henderson County, Texas woman guilty of embezzlement

54-year-old Murchison, Texas woman has pleaded guilty to federal violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales.

Deborah Cornett pleaded guilty to an information charging her with embezzlement by a bank employee today before U.S. Magistrate Judge K. Nicole Mitchell.

According to information presented in court, from November 2007 to May 2013, Cornett was an officer and employee of the First State Bank of Ben Wheeler. During that time, Cornett embezzled approximately $334,736.43 from bank payroll accounts, the bank Christmas Club account, certificates of deposit, and from fraudulently issued bank loans.

Cornett faces up to 30 years in federal prison at sentencing. A sentencing date has not been set.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nathaniel C. Kummerfeld.

East Providence branch manager charged with embezzling from Bank RI

An East Providence man was arrested Wednesday on charges related to the embezzling of $70,063 from the East Providence and Pawtucket branches of Bank Rhode Island, a Rhode Island State Police news release said Wednesday.
Members of the State Police Financial Crimes Unit arrested Victor N. Silva, 34, of 12 Alma St., East Providence, charging him with forgery and embezzlement by a bank officer or employee over $1,500.
The investigation was initiated by a report from Bank Rhode Island security that unauthorized withdrawals were conducted from three customer accounts while Silva was branch manager on Taunton Avenue, East Providence, and filled in as the manager at the Smithfield Avenue branch in Pawtucket. Silva is alleged to have forged withdrawal slips to make unauthorized withdrawals on customers’ accounts and used the funds to pay his mortgage and other personal expenses. The 14 transactions are from May 2013 through November 2013, the state police news release said.
Silva was arraigned in District Court, Providence, and released on his own recognizance until an Aug. 14 appearance for a prearraignment conference.

Colonel Steven G. O'Donnell, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police and Commissioner of Public Safety, announces that members of the State Police Financial Crimes Unit arrested an East Providence man for the alleged embezzlement of $70,063.23 from the East Providence and Pawtucket branches of the Bank Rhode Island.
On June 11, 2014, Victor N. Silva, age 34, of 12 Alma Street, East Providence, RI, was arrested and charged with Embezzlement by a Bank Officer or Employee over $1,500 and Forgery.
The investigation by the Financial Crimes Unit began after the Bank Rhode Island Security Department reported that Silva conducted several unauthorized withdrawals from three customer accounts. At the time of the withdrawals, Silva was the Branch Manager of the Bank Rhode Island branch on Taunton Avenue, East Providence and also filled in as the Manager at the Smithfield Avenue branch, Pawtucket. The allegation against Silva is that he forged withdrawal slips to make unauthorized withdrawals on the customers' accounts and used the funds to pay his mortgage and other personal expenses. The alleged transactions, fourteen in total, took place from May 2013 through November 2013.
Silva was arraigned at the Sixth Division District Court before The Honorable Associate Judge Christine S. Jabour on the above-stated charges and was released on $10,000 personal recognizance. He is scheduled to appear in Sixth Division District Court on August 14, 2014 for a pre-arraignment conference.
The penalty for a person convicted of felony embezzlement by a bank officer or employee over $1,500 is a fine of not more than twenty thousand dollars ($20,000) or imprisonment for not more than twenty (20) years, or both. The penalty for a person convicted of felony forgery is a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) or imprisonment for not more than ten (10) years, or both

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Second woman arrested in bank fraud scheme in Florida

A second woman was arrested for her suspected involvement in a multiperson scheme to defraud a woman of more than $80,000 from her TD Bank account.

Island Dort, 28, was arrested Thursday for taking part in a scheme that started in fall 2011 where she and her friends would withdraw cash and write checks from a woman's inactive bank account, police said.

According to a Boynton Beach Police arrest report, Dort — along with three others — got access to the account through their friend, Jacqueline Dillion, 29, who was a teller at the 1601 Boynton Beach Blvd. branch.

Dort, Lisa Ollis, 38, and Jessica Cruz-Torres, 29, would go to Dillion's teller window and get money out of the account, which Dillion knew was inactive because she worked at the bank. Dort, Ollis and Cruz-Torres would each get a cut of the cash they took out, police said.

Cruz-Torres was arrested and released from the Palm Beach County Jail on Tuesday. Dort is currently in the jail in lieu of a $15,000 bail.

Dillion and Ollis remain at large.

Friday, August 8, 2014

TD Bank Teller Accused of Embezzling Money from Vermont DMV

A TD Bank Teller is accused of embezzling $1,000 from the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles.

A press release says Kelly M. Fleury, 23, of Isle LaMotte, is charged with embezzlement.

The Vermont DMV investigated the incident after learning there was a cash shortage to their bank deposit.  The deposit was made at the TD Bank office located at 111 Main Street in Burlington.

Fleury is scheduled to appear in court in August.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Former bank manager pleads guilty to embezzlement in New Jersey

Federal prosecutors say a former branch manager of a southern New Jersey bank has admitted embezzling more than $260,000.
Season Wengert of Franklinville now faces up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. She also will have to make full restitution.
The 32-year-old Wengert pleaded guilty Tuesday to bank embezzlement. Prosecutors say the thefts occurred between September 2007 and January 2013, but did not say what the money was used for.
Prosecutors say Wengert stole $263,864 by fraudulently conducting online computer transfers of money from 38 accounts belonging to 23 customers into accounts owned by her or her husband. She also withdrew money from customers' accounts and deposited it into her accounts.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Longtime bank employee embezzled $350,000

A former bank employee was sentenced in federal court Wednesday to serve a year in jail and make full restitution to Discover Financial Services in the amount of $350,000 for funds she embezzled from the bank during her employment.
Kimberly Y. Drummond, 47, of Middletown had worked for the bank in New Castle for nearly 20 years in a check processing role.
Sometime around November 2008, she started falsifying entries in Discover's books and records, resulting in the bank issuing duplicate checks, which she then deposited in her personal bank accounts, authorities said.
Drummond used the checks to pay her mortgage lender and purchase luxury items for herself and her family.
The embezzlement continued until August 2012 when it was found out.
During the course of the 4-year scheme, Drummond had embezzled more than $350,000 from Discover, said Kimberlynn Reeves, spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Delaware.
"While defense counsel argued for a probationary sentence and the government requested a guideline sentence of 27 months, the Court's sentence sends a clear message that incarceration is appropriate in situations where individuals abuse their positions of trust within the local banking community," said U.S. Attorney Charles Oberly III.
Drummond was sentenced to 12 months and full restitution for her years-long embezzlement of the federally-insured financial institution.