The former president of Falmouth, Kentucky-based United Kentucky Bank recently pleaded guilty to stealing approximately 9 percent of the financial institution's funds – more than $2.24 million – after her embezzlement was revealed by an accounts payable audit conducted earlier this year.
Between March 2003 and January 2011, Donna Wood misappropriated funds from shareholders of the institution's equity and falsified bank records to cover her tracks. She transferred the money into the accounts of her husband and two sons.
According to the Northern Kentucky News, the financial discrepancies were initially uncovered by an outside accountant during the bank's annual audit. An AP audit commissioned by the bank's board of directors uncovered the full scale of the embezzlement.
"We are attempting to get the money back, (but) it might take years," UKB attorney Jim Crawford said of the bank's recovery audit efforts, as quoted by the news source. He noted that the misappropriation of funds nearly culminated in the financial institution's collapse.
Conducting regular, thorough AP audits can mean the difference between a company's success and demise. The embezzlement of large amounts of money can be devastating to a business, especially during trying economic times.