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Press Release

North Bay Area Credit Union Employee Sentenced To 33 Months In Prison For Embezzlement Scheme

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

SAN FRANCISCO- Allison Bushart was sentenced today to 33 months in prison for misapplication and embezzlement of credit union funds and making and subscribing a false tax return announced United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch, Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett, and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge Michael T. Batdorf.  The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Richard Seeborg, U.S. District Judge, following Bushart’s December 20, 2016, guilty plea.

According to her plea agreement, Bushart, 54, of Rohnert Park, Calif., was employed at the Rohnert Park branch of Patelco Credit Union (Patelco) from approximately May 2003 to early 2015, where her duties included processing member transactions, including cash withdrawals. Bushart acknowledged that, beginning no later than 2010, she began taking cash withdrawals from numerous account holders’ accounts without their knowledge.  Among the methods she used to complete the unauthorized withdrawals was to fill out withdrawal slips for specific amounts related to individuals’ accounts and then to forge the account holders’ signatures on the slips.  She then took the corresponding amounts of cash home at the end of the day or deposited the cash into her own, or a relative’s, account.  Bushart acknowledged that she made unauthorized withdrawals from the accounts of at least ten different individuals, some of whom were legally “vulnerable” because of their age and mental condition.  Bushart also admitted that total amount of unauthorized withdrawals that she made pursuant to her embezzlement scheme exceeded $150,000.  In imposing his sentence, Judge Seeborg concluded that the unauthorized withdrawals exceeded $250,000.

In addition, Bushart admitted as part of her plea agreement that she never declared as income any of the funds she obtained through the unauthorized withdrawals she made.  As a result of failing to declare the income on her annual federal income tax returns, she failed to report $105,000 in income for tax year 2014, resulting in a tax loss suffered by the Internal Revenue Service that year in the amount of $24,469. 

Bushart was charged by information on November 23, 2016, with one count of misapplication and embezzlement of credit union funds, in violation of 26 U.S.C. § 7206(l), and one count of making and subscribing a false tax return, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 981(A)(1)(C).  Pursuant her plea agreement she pleaded guilty to both counts in the information. 

In addition to the prison sentence, Judge Seeborg sentenced Bushart to three years of supervised release.  The court scheduled a hearing on May 2, 2017, at 10:00 a.m., to determine the amount of restitution that Bushart will be ordered to pay.  Bushart was ordered to surrender no later than May 26, 2017, to begin serving her sentence.   

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Waldinger is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Patricia Mahoney.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the FBI and IRS, Criminal Investigation.

Updated April 3, 2017

Financial Fraud