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Press Release

Former Regions Bank Manager Pleads Guilty to Embezzlement and Bank Fraud Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Louisiana

United States Attorney Ronald C. Gathe, Jr. announced that Eric Jason Schouest, age 53, of Plaquemine, Louisiana, pled guilty before U.S. District Judge John W. deGravelles to embezzlement and bank fraud.  Schouest’s embezzlement and bank fraud convictions are each punishable by a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, a fine of $1 million, and a period of supervised release.

According to admissions made during his plea, Schouest was employed at Regions Bank from 2010 to 2021 as a branch manager overseeing business transactions and practices at the Regions Bank Plank Road branch.  In his capacity as branch manager, he had the authority to access customer accounts, instruct others to open and close accounts, issue cashier’s checks, and transfer funds in and out of bank customers’ accounts.

Beginning in or about 2020, and continuing through in or about April 2021, Schouest exploited his position of trust at Regions Bank to embezzle funds from customer accounts and deposit the money into his personal bank accounts.  He also sent false and fraudulent emails and forged documents to other Regions Bank employees to conceal his scheme.  Some of the traceable fraudulent funds were used to make loan payments on personal items such as a house and a car.  Through his scheme, Schouest misappropriated more than $250,000 from Regions customer bank accounts. 

This matter is being investigated by the Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General, the United States Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, and the U.S. Secret Service.  The case is being prosecuted by Deputy Criminal Chief Edward H. Warner and Litigation Counsel Jennifer M. Kleinpeter. 

Updated June 27, 2024

Financial Fraud