Ex-banker guilty of fraud

A former banker who held several senior-level positions in Tuscaloosa and Bibb county has agreed to plead guilty to bank fraud.

John Kevin Vann, 56, has agreed to plead guilty to a federal bank fraud charge, according to U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance. He was the president of BankTrust Bank in Centreville until the allegations against him surfaced in 2014.

Federal prosecutors charged Vann on Monday and announced details of a plea agreement.

Vann, who lives in Tuscaloosa, took out 31 fake loans using the names of relatives, associates and businesses. The loans totaled $279,875, which Vann used for himself, businesses he controlled and to pay creditors.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office filed a 31-count information in U.S. District Court on Monday. Prosecutors reached an agreement with Vann, and recommended a lenient sentence for accepting responsibility and admitting wrongdoing, according to the court documents. The government agreed not to charge him with making false statements in credit and loan applications, aggravated theft and other federal offenses in exchange for the guilty plea.

Vann cost the bank, now Trustmark National Bank, more than $100,000 between Oct. 11, 2011, and March 7, 2014, according to Vance’s office.

Vann took out the loans using names, addresses, Social Security numbers, birth dates, phones numbers, asset and employment information of people he knew. He agreed to forfeit $120,775 and repay that much in restitution to the bank.

He is also facing state charges of identity theft, first-degree theft and first-degree possession of a forged instrument in Bibb County Circuit Court. Authorities there said after his 2014 arrest that he took out a $45,000 loan in a customer’s name and repaid it with subsequent loans. A trial in that case is set for Feb. 13.

Vann could face up to 30 years in prison and a fine up to $1 million, but prosecutors indicated they will seek a more lax punishment. A sentencing date hasn’t been announced.

Vann worked in banking for more than 26 years and held many banking positions in Tuscaloosa before he was named president of the BankTrust branch in Centreville in 2011. BankTrust merged with Jackson, Miss.-based Trustmark in February 2013.

The U.S. Secret Service investigated the case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney Erica Williamson Barnes is prosecuting.

Source:http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/news/20161114/ex-banker-guilty-of-fraud

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