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Press Release

Former Assistant Branch Manager at Tulare Credit Union Pleads Guilty for Stealing over $60,000 from Members’ Accounts to Spend on TikTok

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of California

FRESNO, Calif. — Esther Andrade Olson, 49, of Kings County, pleaded guilty today to embezzling over $60,000 from multiple members’ accounts at a Tulare-based credit union where she was previously employed, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, Olson, while serving as an assistant branch manager, made several unauthorized withdrawals from four members’ accounts from July through August 2022.  Olson made unauthorized cash withdrawals by bringing up the victims’ accounts while assisting other credit union members who were at the teller window to make it appear as though she had legitimate reasons to access the credit union’s cash stores.  When confronted by credit union officials, Olson claimed that one of the victims was “doing some remodeling,” but told another employee that she was “done” and abruptly resigned from her position.  Olson spent most of the money that she stole on TikTok, gifting much of the funds to an out of state individual with hundreds of thousands of followers on TikTok.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Chan Hee Chu and Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Barton are prosecuting the case.

Olson is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Ana de Alba on March 4, 2024.  Olson faces a maximum statutory penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine.  The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Updated November 13, 2023

Financial Fraud