Maryland Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing Over $120,000 from Bank Customer Accounts
Bank Detected Fraud Before Even More Money Was Stolen
WASHINGTON – Michael Drummond, 35, of Hyattsville, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to a federal charge of conspiracy to commit bank fraud for his role in a scheme in which Wells Fargo Bank customers lost $124,000 from their accounts. According to the government’s evidence, the participants in the scheme attempted to steal another $80,000 from the bank’s customers, but the bank detected that fraud and stopped the loss.
The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves and Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office Criminal Division.
Drummond pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The Honorable Royce C. Lamberth scheduled sentencing for May 13, 2022. Under federal sentencing guidelines, Drummond faces a likely range of 27 to 33 months in prison, a restitution order, and a fine of up to $60,000. He also has agreed to pay $124,000 in a forfeiture money judgment.
In entering his plea, Drummond admitted to orchestrating a scheme that was carried out in 2017 in which Drummond recruited bank employees who would make unauthorized withdrawals from Wells Fargo customer accounts. The bank employees used the bank's internal systems to check the account balances of customers without the customer’s knowledge. Those employees then told Drummond the customer’s name and account balance.
Drummond then sent another accomplice into the bank to pose as the customer and to withdraw the funds, unbeknownst to the actual customer. The conspirators used this scheme to steal $124,000 in cash and an $80,000 cashier’s check from two of the bank’s customers. Although Wells Fargo was able to detect the theft and stop payment of the $80,000 cashier’s check, Wells Fargo incurred losses on behalf of its customers for the $124,000 in cash that Drummond and others stole.
Another conspirator, Tiara Langston, 30, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, entered a guilty plea in November 2020 to related charges and was sentenced in March 2021 to a 15-month prison term.
In announcing today’s guilty plea, U.S. Attorney Graves and Special Agent in Charge Jacobs commended the work of those who investigated the case from the FBI’s Washington Field Office. They also acknowledged the work of those who are handling the case at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Assistant U.S. Attorney John W. Borchert, who is prosecuting the matter.