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Iowa bank official pleads guilty to stealing over $800,000

gavel-justiceCEDAR RAPIDS – An officer of Country Bancorporation who embezzled more than $800,000 from banks controlled by the company pled guilty today in federal court in Cedar Rapids.

Heidi Wagler, age 50, from Wayland, Iowa, was convicted of one count of embezzlement by a bank officer.

In a plea agreement, Wagler admitted that from June 2004 through October 2013, while she was an officer of Country Bancorporation, she embezzled at least $864,835 from the company. At the time Wagler was an officer of Country Bancorporation. The company controlled seven banks and Wagler was in charge of doing payroll for each of these banks. She was also a member of the Board of Directors of one of the banks and her husband, Russell Wagler, was the Director, President, and CEO of that same bank. Wagler further admitted that, although she was entitled to compensation from Country Bancorporation for doing the payroll for its banks, she paid herself excess compensation from each of the seven banks at various times over the course of her embezzlement. She also admitted that, from January 2008 through November 2013, she paid her husband additional compensation to which he was not entitled.

Sentencing before United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade will be set after a presentence report is prepared. Wagler remains free on conditions of release set by the court pending sentencing. She faces a possible maximum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment, a fine of up to twice the loss resulting from her offense, a $100 special assessment, and five years of supervised release following any imprisonment.­ Wagler could also be ordered to pay restitution to any victims.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Anthony Morfitt and was investigated by the FBI and FDIC.

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