Joyce Judy, Former President of Arkansas Employees Credit Union, Admits Bank Fraud

Joyce Judy, who was president of Arkansas Employees Federal Credit Union in Arkansas until April, waived indictment and pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of bank fraud.

A news release issued jointly by the U.S. Attorney's Office, the Secret Service and the FBI said Judy, 58, misappropriated $500,000 from an AEFCU customer's account in October 2009 as part of a $1 million investment that Judy made in what appears to have been a scam. She was fired when the fraud was discovered.

In the meantime, she put the customer's money and her own $500,000 into an account set up for an "investment opportunity" that Judy had agreed to. "Without Judy’s permission," according to the press release, "those funds were later wired out of the country."

The other party to the investment was not identified. 

Judy, of North Little Rock, pleaded guilty to an "information," the term for a charge filed directly by federal prosecutors rather than an indictment issued by a grand jury.

"I would like to commend the financial institution for bringing this fraud to the attention of the United States, and I encourage any person or entity that learns of fraud to contact law enforcement," U.S. Attorney Chris Thyer said in announcing the plea. "When those in positions of authority and trust criminally abuse that authority for their own gain, federal law enforcement in the Eastern District of Arkansas stands ready to investigate and prosecute such actions."

Judy had been president of the AEFCU since February 2006. AEFCU, which was set up primarily for state employees but which is not a state agency, had 6,200 members and assets of $37.3 million as of Dec. 31.

The National Credit Union Administration, which regulates federal credit unions, has apparently taken no action against Judy to date.