Laguna Hills Bank Teller Who Lied to the FBI Gets Sentenced

Bank teller Alvina Roy Sundaram faced five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for lying to an FBI agent probing allegations that her boss, a vice president at the Farmers and Merchants Bank in Laguna Hills, had stolen money from one of the bank's customers.

According to FBI Special Agent Michele Belluzzi, Sundaram knew that the bank's vice president, identified only as “M.W.” in court documents, was secretly using a customer's line of credit for himself and that in June 2011 she falsely denied knowledge of the crime.


John D. Early, Sundaram's defense lawyer, sought a punishment of no jail time.

This month, U.S. District Court Judge Andrew J. Guilford sentenced her to one year of probation and waived all fines.

Sundaram no longer works at the bank, according to court records.

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R. Scott Moxley’s award-winning investigative journalism has touched nerves for two decades. An angry congressman threatened to break Moxley’s knee caps. A dirty sheriff promised his critical reporting was irrelevant and then landed in prison. The U.S. House of Representatives debated his work. Federal prosecutors credited his stories for the arrest of a doctor who sold fake medicine to dying patients. Moxley has won Journalist of the Year honors at the Los Angeles Press Club; been named Distinguished Journalist of the Year by the LA Society of Professional Journalists; and hailed by two New York Times Magazine writers for his “herculean job” exposing Southern California law enforcement corruption.

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