November 6, 2020
Fraud Friday — Former Bank of America Manager Pleads Guilty to Embezzling $1.5 Million
Former Bank of America client relationship manager, Waqas Ali, pleaded guilty last month to embezzling $1.5 million from one of his clients and using a portion of those funds to purchase a $63,293 Porsche SUV and other luxury goods.
According to court documents, on September 14, 2016, Ali opened an account in the name of a Bank of America customer's business without their knowledge or consent. He then ordered a debit card linked to the fraudulent account and directed that card to be mailed to his attention at his work address.
Once Ali received the debit card, he transferred $1.5 million from the client’s commercial loan and investment accounts into his fraudulent account. To conceal the criminal activity, he strategically transferred a portion of the funds back to the victim, leaving approximately $600,000 for his own luxury purchases and cash withdrawals.
Of the money stolen, $90,914 went toward purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue, Burberry, Bloomingdale’s, Christian Louboutin, and Apple; $144,005 was spent paying off credit cards with charges for landscaping, home improvement, and airlines; and $63,293 was spent on a new Porsche SUV (which Ali later sold back to the dealership for cash).
The victim discovered Ali’s scheme in 2018 and notified the bank. Upon being fired, Ali admitted that he stole the money and said that he targeted the client because they had been defrauded before and never pressed charges.
Ali’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 1, 2021. He faces up to 20 years in prison, 3 years of probation, and a fine of $250,000 for wire fraud and an additional 10 years in prison for unlawful monetary transactions.
Department of Justice