The manager of a now-defunct credit union in Jefferson Parish has been charged with embezzling more than $1 million in a scheme that allegedly involved almost 150 fictitious loans.
Jacqueline Ray, 60, was charged by a bill of information — likely an indication she intends to plead guilty — with one count of bank larceny.
Ray worked for the Ochsner Clinic Federal Credit Union for nearly three decades until regulators determined it was insolvent and shut down its operations in 2013. The credit union had about 3,100 members and assets of about $9.25 million at the time.
Teague, who was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay restitution, confessed to the theft in May 2013 amid an audit by the National Credit Union Administration, which announced the shuttering of the credit union the next month. Teague’s plea agreement required her to testify against Ray, court documents show.
The credit union, which was independent of Ochsner Health Systems and the Ochsner Clinic Foundation, was chartered in 1973 to serve mainly people working in the medical field in New Orleans. When it was closed, its accounts and loans were taken over by the ASI Federal Credit Union of Harahan.
Federal prosecutors, in court documents filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in New Orleans, alleged that Ray was “directly responsible and heavily involved in” the credit union’s bookkeeping and accounting functions.
She was entrusted with “unfettered access to teller work stations and logins to perform transactions within the data processing system,” they said.
The embezzlement involved 149 fictitious loans created in 71 member accounts, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Prosecutors allege the larceny dated back to 2007.
“Nearly all of the member accounts had two fictitious loans,” the bill of information says.
The proceeds would be stolen from the credit union in the form of a check drawn on the credit union and made payable to either a fictitious member, the credit union or an auto dealership.
Ray deposited the checks in the credit union’s account at a local bank, the bill of information says, “and credited the deposits made with the fictitious and fraudulent loan proceeds into her share account” at the credit union or into accounts made in the name of family members.
Ray then withdrew “large amounts of money” from various accounts into which she had deposited the spoils, the government alleges.
Ray is scheduled to appear in court Jan. 11. She faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Her defense attorney did not immediately return a call seeking comment Thursday.
Follow Jim Mustian on Twitter, @JimMustian.