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Germantown Woman Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Her Employer of More Than $1 Million

Sobeida Maria Laboy, age 46, of Germantown, pleaded guilty on in U.S. District Court on Wednesday, Nov. 30, to bank fraud arising from a scheme to defraud the financial institution for which she worked of more than $1 million. Federal investigators determined she orchestrated a nearly 7-year effort to funnel money into her personal bank accounts.

According to federal prosecutors, Laboy can face up to 30 years in prison for the scheme to fill her own personal bank account with funds frequently intended for other accounts. The scheme netted her $1.02 million over seven years.

According to her plea agreement, Laboy worked in the Chevy Chase branch office of a financial institution that offered online banking services to its customers and had affiliates that offered homes loans and other financial services. The financial institution that Laboy worked for was not released in the statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Laboy admitted that from December 2007 through June 19, 2014, she created fraudulent invoices, which she submitted, along with check requests, for payment by her employer. The invoices purported to be for services provided by a specific vendor. Laboy submitted the fraudulent invoices along with a check request form, stating that the check should be sent to her at her office in Chevy Chase. Laboy forged the signature of another employee in the “approval” section of the form. Instead of sending the checks for payment to the vendor, Laboy endorsed the checks with her own signature and deposited them into her personal bank accounts.

Over the course of the scheme, Laboy deposited at least 60 checks issued by her employer and made payable to the vendor. Laboy deposited at least six additional checks either issued by her employer and made payable to other vendors, or issued by various vendors including U.S. Bank, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase.and made payable to her employer. As a result of the scheme, Laboy fraudulently obtained at least $1,020,576.28.

She is scheduled for sentencing on March 15, 2017, at 9:30 am in front of U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte, where Laboy faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison for bank fraud. The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office.