A 25-year-old former U.S. Bank employee could serve up to 30 years behind bars for orchestrating a cybercrime scheme that netted her more than $100,000, and left two elderly customers broke.
Brenda Bautista Hurtado pleaded guilty on Monday (Aug. 29) to one count of theft by a bank employee, a federal felony offense. According to the FBI press release, Hurtado admitted in court that she stole nearly $100,000 from the accounts of two elderly customers, as well as another $10,000 in cash from the bank's vault while employed at the Arroyo Grande, Calif., branch.
Hurtado executed her inside job, the FBI said, by secretly accessing U.S. Bank's computer system and changing the contact information for the two elderly targets. She then allegedly closed both accounts and took out cashier's checks for the balance of each account.
The walls started to close in on Hurtado when one of the customers she robbed — both were in their 80s — came into the bank and complained that his money had inexplicably gone missing.
Hurtado allegedly went into the bank vault, took out $10,000 in cash, and, in a move straight out of any great bank caper flick, she fled to Mexico for several weeks. When she returned, the FBI arrested her.
Hurtado's sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 21.