Gulfport woman appears before judge for bank fraud

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Lisa Brooks, 45 made her arraignment on a single-count indictment charging her with bank fraud on Wednesday, July 27.

Brooks was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 6, 2011 for embezzling money from her former employer Hancock Bank.

According to a statement released by the U.S. Department of Justice, Brooks was in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1344.

The indictment alleges that from October 2006 through October 2008, the defendant, worked as an auditor in the Hancock Bank Recoveries Department in Long Beach.

Brooks would receive checks for collection matters which were made payable to Hancock Bank.

She would deposit the checks into a general ledger account and prepare money orders to post to the individual charged-off accounts.

But, according to the indictment, while Brooks was preparing the money orders she would allegedly convert portions of the amount from the checks to money orders for herself and family members.

Brooks would then, reportedly, conceal her theft by forging her daughter's signature on some of the money orders when depositing the funds into a joint checking account that she held with her daughter at another bank.

Brooks trial is set to begin September 6, 2011 in Gulfport before U.S. District Chief Judge Louis Guriola, Jr. The case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Mike Hurst.

If convicted, the Brooks faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and/or a $1,000,000 fine.  

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