Bank Director Gets 12 Years in Prison for Misapplying Bank Funds

Allison Tussey —  June 9, 2015 — Leave a comment

Michael P. Bernick, 51, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a former bank director, was sentenced in federal court to 144 months of imprisonment on his conviction on nine counts of misapplication and theft of funds by a bank director. Bernick did not complete any loan applications, sign notes, or provide security for the monetary advances, yet received more than $350,000.

United States District Judge Arthur J. Schwab imposed the sentence on the Defendant.

According to the evidence presented at trial, Bernick, a Director of the Metropolitan Savings Bank, formerly located in Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville section, embezzled and misapplied in excess of $350,000 from the bank between January 2005 and March 2006. Donna Shebetich, Bernick’s girlfriend and the former Director and Vice President of Metropolitan, provided him with nine monetary disbursements from the bank’s checking account in the form of seven cashier’s checks and two wire transfers payable to Bernick, himself, or to financial institutions used to pay off his loans.

Bernick did not complete any loan applications, sign notes, or provide security for the monetary advances. Metropolitan’s procedures required that all advances be approved by the Board of Directors. Neither Bernick nor Shebetich sought the authorization from the Board of Directors, either before or after the advances were extended. Bernick’s thefts jeopardized the soundness of the bank and ultimately caused the failure of Metropolitan on Feb. 2, 2007. Shebetich is currently serving a six-year term of imprisonment for filing false quarterly reports with the FDIC, which further secreted Bernick’s conduct.

United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced the sentence.

Assistant United States Carolyn J. Bloch prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

U.S. Attorney Hickton commended the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for conducting the investigation that led to the successful prosecution of Bernick.

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Allison Tussey

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