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Denison woman pleads guilty to embezzling nearly $1.5M from local credit union

DENISON, Iowa (KTIV) -- An Iowa woman has pleaded guilty to embezzling nearly $1.5 million from a credit union in Denison over a period of several years.

According to a press release, Brenda Jensen of Denison was convicted of credit union embezzlement.

In a plea agreement, Jensen admitted from at least May 2012 to March 2018 she embezzled money from the Consumer Credit Union in Denison while working there as an employee. The credit union serviced Crawford, Carrol, Shelby, Ida, Monona, Sac and Harrison counties.

Officials say Jensen was the credit union's head teller and was responsible for all cash and cash counts at CCU during the six-year timeframe.

Jensen was able to conceal the crime by overstating the change fund in the credit union's general ledge balance and by participating with at least one other employee in issuing and depositing fraudulent checks to cover up their ongoing theft. 

Jensen further concealed the embezzlement by creating fictitious deposits into her personal accounts at CCU.

Jensen's embezzlement caused CCU to lose $539,000. Officials say as a result of the embezzlement, CCU was forced to enter a merger with another credit union, the SAC Federal Credit Union.

CCU was insolvent with negative equity of approximately $481,206, and the value of its assets had decreased by over a million dollars. The million-dollar decrease was a direct loss from fraudulent activity.

Jensen remains free on bond pending sentencing. Jensen faces a possible maximum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment, a $1,000,000 fine, and 5 years of supervised release following any imprisonment.

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Dean Welte

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