A former Georgia community banker who faked his own death two years ago was sentenced on Tuesday to serve 30 years in prison for committing fraud that led to a bank's failure.
Aubrey Lee Price pleaded guilty in June to bank, securities and wire fraud that resulted in the demise of Montgomery Bank & Trust in Ailey, Ga., in 2012.
Court filings showed that four years ago an investment group controlled by Price invested approximately $10 million in MB&T. When Price was made a director at MB&T, he told officials that the bank's capital would be invested in U.S. Treasury securities. However, he instead embezzled over $21 million in capital from MB&T in risky equity investments, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a release.
Meanwhile, to cover up his fraud, Price provided MB&T officials with false account statements and documents that indicated the bank's capital was safely held in an account at a financial services firm.
Price disappeared in June 2012 when MB&T failed. Price sent acquaintances suicide letters, telling them he was going to commit suicide by throwing himself off a high-speed ferry in Florida because he defrauded the financial institution. The U.S. Coast Guard searched for Price's body and declared him dead.
However, in January 2013, Price was arrested in Brunswick, Ga., after he provided false identification during a routine traffic violation.
A federal receiver appointed to recoup money for Price's investors collected about $3.3 million as of July 30, according to the Associated Press. But this includes $1.8 million in life insurance payments made after Price was declared dead that the insurers are seeking to take back, the AP said.