Arroyo Grande bank employee rips off customer accounts
May 24, 2011
FBI special agents took Brenda Bautista Hurtado, 25, into custody without incident after she was named in a three-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury last Friday.
The indictment accused Hurtado of stealing money while employed last year at the U.S. Bank branch in Arroyo Grande.
The investigation in this case revealed that Hurtado secretly accessed the U.S. Bank’s computer system and changed the contact information for the accounts of two elderly customers at the bank. After changing their contact information, Hurtado then allegedly closed these accounts and took out cashier’s checks for the balance of each account.
When one of the customers came to the bank and learned that his account had been closed, Hurtado went into the bank’s vault and took $10,000 in cash. Hurtado then went to Mexico for several weeks before returning to the United States.
She was arrested this morning in Guadalupe where she has been staying for the past few months.
The indictment alleges that Hurtado stole $50,907 on February 24, 2010 and another $48,163 on February 26, 2010. The indictment further alleges that Hurtado stole $10,000 in cash from the bank vault on June 7, 2010.
Each count of theft by a bank employee carries a statutory maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $1 million.
Hurtado is expected to be arraigned on the indictment this afternoon in United States District Court in Los Angeles.
The case against Hurtado is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.