Columbia man guilty of federal bank, loan fraud

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A former Columbia resident entered guilty pleas Thursday in federal court to several charges in connection with bank and loan fraud.

Theodore J. Longust, 50, is now facing a prison sentence of up to 240 years and fines of up to $4.5 million when sentencing occurs on Sept. 6.

Longust was charged with financial institution fraud, misapplication of funds, money laundering and making false records with intent to deceive.

Court information provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office states that Longust was an employee of Scott Credit Union in the commercial loan department from Nov. 7, 2005, through Dec. 8, 2014, holding the title of business relationship manager. Longust executed a scheme to defraud through the embezzlement of credit union funds, the creation of fraudulent loans, payment of loans through the misapplication of funds from other loans, the increase of credit limits on loans that did not have board approval, the issuance of business loans without the required documentation or security and issuance of letters of credit without required documentation and security.

The indictment also alleged that Longust knowingly submitted a false report to Scott Credit Union for the third quarter of 2014 that misstated loan balances and omitted loan amounts and underreported loans of more than $12 million.

“While we are not in the business of giving the public financial or legal advice, the public should know that our investigation revealed that the safety and soundness of Scott Credit Union has not been adversely affected by the criminal conduct,” Acting U.S. Attorney Porter stated. “We thank the employees of Scott Credit Union, who fully cooperated in our federal investigation.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service assisted in this case.

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