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The Region

February 12, 1986

A former North Hollywood bank executive has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for embezzling $2.5 million from customers and the bank. Fereidoon Mafi Vassegh, 49, took out nearly three dozen loans in the names of customers at American Pacific State Bank and kept the money, government prosecutors said. He pleaded guilty to three counts of embezzlement on Nov. 12. A senior vice president and the third-ranking executive at the bank since 1980, Vassegh was caught after missing a payment on one of 34 loans he had taken out under other people's names in August, 1983, prosecutors said. When the supposed borrower denied ever getting the loan, the bank began an audit and later contacted the FBI. Authorities said some of the stolen money went to repay at least $384,000 of Vassegh's Las Vegas gambling debts. U.S. District Judge William Keller also ordered Vassegh to pay full restitution to the bank and defrauded customers.

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