Arroyo Grande bank employee rips off customer accounts

May 24, 2011

An Arroyo Grande woman was arrested this morning for allegedly stealing nearly 100,000 from two elderly customer’s bank accounts and another $10,000 from the U.S Bank’s vault.

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.

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Too bad for her she wasn’t caught bundling sub-prime mortgages, giving them AAA ratings, or fraudulently representing them to foreign investors. If that were the case, she’d be eligible for a multi-billion $$ government handout.

If she really did this then she should have stayed in Mexco, how stupid to come back.

Wow, she shoud be elected to congress. They have been dipping into our money for decades now.

Bah! Stealing money out of a vault! Ripping off seniors. If you want to do it right, run for political office!

This woman has some ‘splainin’ to do!

Pretty sure those were FDIC insured accounts, she didn’t rip off “seniors” she ripped off the whole lot of us that use banks, that’s why she’s getting the book thrown at her here, ripping off individual seniors doesn’t get nearly the same treatment in the press. Now imagine the difference it would make in the headlines that she robbed an insurance agency, which is basically the truth.

Folks would be cheering her on! (That’s an exaggeration, I know)

By this same logic, if Hurtado stole the guns and gold from my insured home, it would be tantamount to her ripping off my insurance company, not me. I ain’t buying it.

Not the same at all,your house is not a bank and your possessions are not cash, once the cash goes into an account at a bank it is mixed with all the other cash there, rendering it indistinguishable from any one else’s cash. While your insurance would pay you cash for your loss, that doesn’t get you your guns and gold back, sure you could buy more, but if there was any kind of personal attachment on your part you’d be out of luck, YOU would have been robbed and have suffered a loss. In this case those seniors that got their accounts emptied suffered no more than a inconvenience, and then were made whole again with cash that is exactly like the cash they had. Big difference.