FRESNO, Calif. —Sylvia Ochoa, 34, of Fresno, pleaded guilty today to embezzlement by a bank employee, United States Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
According to court documents, Ochoa was the manager of a Bank of America branch on Tulare Street in downtown Fresno. On multiple occasions in 2013, Ochoa entered the bank vault after other employees had left for the day and removed cash without authorization. Ochoa used the money to purchase items for herself and her boyfriend, including designer handbags and a truck that she purchased for $24,000 in cash. Ochoa also caused Bank of America to electronically credit accounts that she set up. For example, Ochoa transferred at least $69,000 of Bank of America’s money into her boyfriend’s bank account. Ochoa admitted that she embezzled at least $100,000 from Bank of America during this time.
This case was the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Fresno Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Michael G. Tierney is prosecuting the case.
Ochoa is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dale A. Drozd on July 11, 2017. Ochoa faces a maximum statutory penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.