- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A former Drug Enforcement Administration employee pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of wire fraud after she was caught using credit cards to steal more than $113,000 from the federal government.

Keenya Meshell Banks, 42, used her position as a DEA program manager to obtain at least 32 of the credit cards through fake credit card applications, according to a Justice Department statement. Banks then used those cards to withdraw the money from ATMs in Maryland and northern Virginia.

Banks was able to execute the scheme because she was responsible for the approval and issuance of government cards to DEA employees, the department said.

“While serving in that role, Banks admitted that she submitted dozens of fake credit card applications to JPMorgan Chase & Co. for fictitious DEA employees, using names and identifying information of individuals who did not work at the DEA,” the statement read. “In at least one instance, however, Banks submitted the identifying information of an actual DEA employee.”

As part of plea agreement, Banks agreed to forfeit the money she obtained through the scheme and pay full restitution.

Banks pleaded guilty before a federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Her sentencing hearing has been set for June 29.

• Maggie Ybarra can be reached at mybarra@washingtontimes.com.

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