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News Now

CU System
Appeals court Resentence exec in embezzlement case
MICHIGAN CITY, Mich. (2/19/10)--A credit union executive convicted of embezzling about $339,000 should be re-sentenced, according to a recent ruling by the Michigan Court of Appeals. Terry L. Brandt, 58, was convicted in September 2008 of embezzling from Michigan Center, Mich.-based Cascades CU while he was chief financial officer and treasurer of the credit union. Brandt wired money from the credit union's general account to his personal trading accounts at least nine times between October 2006 and January 2008, according to court records (News Now Sept. 5, 2008). In October 2008, Brandt was sentenced to five to 20 years in prison for the offense. However, Court of Appeals judges said his sentencing guidelines--a point system used to calculate a spectrum of possible penalties--were incorrectly calculated by the lower court judge (Jackson Citizen Patriot via Mlive.com Feb. 17). The prosecution in the original case argued that when Brandt committed the crime he abused his authority status--and he was assessed points for this, the newspaper said. The appeals court found that, as defined by law, Brandt did not abuse his authority by exploiting a victim--in this case, the credit union, the paper said. “He simply was in a position to take the money and hide the transfers,” according to the court’s written decision released in January. Jerrold Schrotenboer, chief appellate attorney for Jackson County, Mich., said he is appealing the decision, according to the paper.


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