WASHINGTON, D.C. (2/12/13) – Deanne Marie Cottle, 63, of Swan Valley, Idaho, a former vice president of Bank of Commerce of Idaho Falls, Idaho, was sentenced today to 15 months in prison for embezzling $142,008.60 from the bank, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced.
Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill also ordered Cottle to serve two years of supervised release after her prison term and pay a $2,000 fine. On November 27, 2012, Cottle pleaded guilty to a one-count information charging her with embezzlement by a bank employee.
According to the plea agreement, an audit conducted on September 13, 2011, found that between January 12, 2009 and September 8, 2011, Cottle, the former vice president of security and director of human resources at Bank of Commerce, converted approximately 31 checks totaling $142,008.60 from health insurance carriers to the bank. Cottle admitted that she converted the money into cashier’s checks, which she then deposited into a personal credit union account. During a subsequent interview with the FBI, Cottle admitted that she willfully and knowingly embezzled the funds. According to the plea agreement, Cottle has made full restitution to Bank of Commerce.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
“The detection and prosecution of the crime in this case exemplifies efforts underway by President Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (FFETF),” said Olson. “Thanks to the dedicated work of the FBI in this case, and the ongoing work of the FBI and other partners, the District of Idaho is proud to be a successful part of this important program. We will continue to work with our partners in the law enforcement community—federal, state, and local—to identify and prosecute those who commit fraud.”
The FFETF was created in November 2009 to wage an aggressive, coordinated, and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices, and state and local partners, it is the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory, and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state, and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions, and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed more than 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants, including more than 2,700 mortgage fraud defendants. For more information on the task force, visit www.stopfraud.gov.
Information provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation
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