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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Former Bank Employee Pleads Guilty To Bank Fraud

Jacksonville, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces that Patricia Margaret Drake (24, Jacksonville) today pleaded guilty to three counts of bank fraud. She faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison for each count. A sentencing date has not yet been set. Drake was indicted on May 7, 2014.

According to court documents, on December 5, 2013, a Wells Fargo Bank customer in Jacksonville contacted the bank in order to discuss his concerns regarding unauthorized withdrawals from his bank account. After an internal review of the matter, Wells Fargo Bank identified a series of fraudulent withdrawals from the victim’s bank account. Drake, a Wells Fargo Bank employee, was identified as the teller who had handled every fraudulent withdrawal.

The investigation revealed that the victim was not present in the bank branch on the days when the withdrawals took place, including days when withdrawals were made by counter withdrawal slips. U.S. Secret Service agents later interviewed Drake about the fraudulent bank withdrawals. Drake stated that while using the victim’s bank account number, she made multiple unauthorized withdrawals from the victim’s bank account. Drake also stated that she was not sure how many transactions were completed or the total amount of money stolen from the victim’s account. She did not think the victim would notice the withdrawals quickly because he had a larger account balance.

This case was investigated by United States Secret Service. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kevin C. Frein.

Updated January 26, 2015