A senior vice president at Bank of America, her husband and a Boston woman were indicted today on charges they figured out how to steal $2.7 million from the bank through transactions with non-profit groups in Boston and Atlanta, the US Attorney's office reports.
Palestine "Pam" Ace, 45, one-time senior vice president of Bank of America’s Global Wealth and Investment Management Division and her husband, Jonathan R. Ace, 46, both of Rockland, and Brianna Alexis Forde, 35, of Boston, were each indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud. Palestine Ace was also indicted on 12 counts of bank fraud and four counts of wire fraud; Jonathan Ace was also charged with two counts of wire fraud and one engaging in an unlawful monetary transaction; and Forde was also indicted on two counts of wire fraud.
According to the US Attorney's office, the three cooked up a scheme in which they "donated" large sums to various charities, then asked them to return large parts of the money as proof they could be trusted with further donations. But instead of making out checks to the banks, the non-profit groups were told to write checks in the name of Jonathan Ace or Forde, the feds say.
On various occasions, Jonathan Ace pressured the recipients of the donated funds to return a higher percentage of the funds to him, by using intimidation and threats of public humiliation.
Ace's outgoing checks, misappropriated from a bank marketing fund, were each for up to $50,000, the US Attorney's office says, adding she sent out at least 75 such checks between 2010 and 2015.
The indictment also alleges that Palestine and Jonathan Ace used a portion of the funds they embezzled from Bank of America to support their lifestyle and pay for personal expenses, including lavish birthday parties and the purchase of a $17,000 Kawasaki motorcycle.