An Alton woman has been sentenced to 21 months in prison following her guilty plea to bank fraud in federal court last fall. 45-year-old Cynthia L. Palmer admitted to her role in a scheme to defraud and embezzle from U.S. Bank. She was employed at the bank’s Bethalto Airport branch as a universal banker.
Palmer admitted she made unauthorized debits on customers’ accounts, principally targeting older individuals between ages 65 and 96. The bank terminated her in December of 2013, and investigators claim she caused a direct loss of nearly $106,000. In addition to the prison sentence, she has been ordered to pay that money back, and serve an additional two years of supervised release. She was facing up to 30 years in prison, and a fine of up to $1-million.