Feds: Bank employee sold customer info

ATLANTA - Federal authorities say a Duluth woman schemed with a Wachovia bank employee to drain customer accounts of thousands, including some money set aside for children's trust funds.

Schnikia Scruggs, 37, is scheduled to appear before a federal judge Aug. 14 to answer to charges of aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

Scruggs was not employed by the bank but was associated with Yolanda Denise Scott, 31, of Hampton, who worked in the exceptions department of a Wachovia branch in Atlanta.

In the span of several months in 2007, Scott allegedly sold Wachovia bank routing and customer account information to Scruggs, who transferred thousands to several accounts in her name, authorities said. Scruggs reportedly used the stolen money to pay utility bills and retail accounts online.

Scott also provided customer account information to a third co-defendant - Germaine Monroe, 57, of Atlanta - who also paid bills with the funds, U.S. Attorney David Nahmias said.

"This bank employee allegedly abused the trust placed in her by the bank and its customers," Nahmias said in a release.

Each of the women face one count of conspiracy, while Scott and Scruggs face four counts of aggravated identity fraud. Monroe faces two counts of the latter charge.

All three face minimum sentences of two years in federal prison and fines of up to $1 million.