According to the management of Zia Credit Union, a recent examination of the company’s financials revealed something just wasn’t quite right.
In August, their worst fears were confirmed when an employee, Ashley S. Maestas, 22, allegedly confessed to stealing about $24,000 (which may include interest) from the company. Maestas was fired shortly after her interview with management about the matter.
According to court documents, Maestas was able to steal the money by increasing a $500 credit limit on one of her accounts herself, an employee violation she knew was in violation of the credit union’s security policy.
In order to override the security controls that would have prevented such an act, she made the transactions through another employee’s computer. According to surveillance video obtained by police, when a fellow employee would leave her workstation, Maestas would use the employee’s computer in her absence without her knowledge. She would then transfer the funds to her checking and savings accounts.
According to the credit union’s estimates, Maestas allegedly embezzled about $23,545 (not including interest) from the credit union. An audit of all of Maestas’ accounts revealed that only $1,735.95 in Maestas’ checking and savings accounts.