Skip to main content
Tampa Bay-Lakeland
Business Observer Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016 3 years ago

Former Tampa area banker imprisoned for embezzlement

Michael Johnson of Odessa was also ordered to repay $152,783.

Michael Johnson, 56, of Odessa, a former executive with American Momentum Bank in Tampa, has been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for embezzlement and misapplication of funds.

Johnson was also ordered to repay $152,783, the proceeds of the charged criminal conduct, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Beginning around June 2012 and continuing through November 2014, Johnson, authorities contended, devised a scheme to misapply and embezzle funds provided by American Momentum Bank. He did this in his role as a senior vice president/special assets officer, where he was responsible for selling bank-owned properties to investors to remove the assets from American Momentum's balance sheet. Johnson signed the closing documents, including the HUD-1 Settlement Statement, in his role, according to the statement.

After American Momentum Bank approved the sale of bank-owned property, Johnson set up closings with real estate settlement agents. He then contacted the settlement agents and ordered additions and/or changes to the disbursement side of the HUD-1. Then, after closing, funds from American Momentum were misapplied by directing checks to be written or the wiring of funds to bank accounts controlled by Johnson's family members, authorities alleged.

American Momentum Bank, based in College Station, Texas, had $1.1 billion in assets through June. The bank, formerly headquartered in Tampa before a series of acquisitions, was founded in 2006.

Related Stories