Matthew Walker, Whose Family Founded Farmers & Merchants Bank, Pleads Guilty To Stealing Almost $2M From Customer's Account

Categories: Crime-iny
A high-profile Orange County banker has pleaded guilty to embezzling almost $2 million from a customer's account at the bank founded by his relatives. 

Matthew J. Walker, 34, of Orange, stole the money from a customer's account at Farmers and Merchants Bank, where he was vice president and branch manager of the Laguna Hills branch, according to a plea agreement. 

Yesterday, before U.S. District Judge Andrew J. Guilford in Santa Ana,Walker pleaded guilty to one count of theft of bank funds. Walker admitted, therefore, that over a 16-month period, which culminated last July, he withdrew $1,973,000 from a line of credit in the name of a trust that had an account at Farmers and Merchants, according to a press release put out by the U.S. Attorney's Office Central District of California.

And, in an effort to hide his scheme, Walker paid interest on the line of credit's balance, says Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Waier. Walker kept the money for personal use and invested some of it in a company called Xoodlz, Inc., according to the plea agreement. 

C.J. Walker founded Farmers and Merchants bank in 1907 and ownership and management has stayed in the family since then, according to the bank's website.

Daniel Walker, Matthew's father and president of the bank, told the Los Angeles Times that the bank found out about his son's scheme during a routine audit and immediately fired him and reimbursed the customer.
 
Daniel Walker is quoted in the Times' story saying: "We're very disappointed. This was an unfortunate incident. This was a business deal he was doing on his own." 

Walker's sentencing is slated for May 21 and he faces a maximum of 30 years in federal prison. With the plea agreement, though, he's expected to get about four years, the press release states.

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19 comments
Scoobydoo751
Scoobydoo751

He got the boot previously for the same thing and they brought him back..so not once but twice he did this. Shame on him and the family....what goes around....etc etc

Behindthewalkers
Behindthewalkers

Unless you know the entire story I suggest you all shut your prejudging, narrow minded mouths. I not only grew up with Matt and his sister, but our children are the best of friends. All these comments you're making are hurtful and completely unnecessary. Was the money yours? Did you sit in the courtroom and watch his remorse? Do you sit there and listen to his wife sob because she doesn't know how she'll raise 3 kids by herself? NO! Then shut the hell up and start attacking someone else.

Comesaroundgoesaround
Comesaroundgoesaround

Hey Panayiota,

About Camp you don't know what you are talking about.  Bank offered $10k limit, no more.  Camp's insurance had a subjugation clause, stating any 3rd party(F&M Bank) money would go directly to them until they were fully covered, still leaving Camp with $20k in debt,  So the bank would have had to use their insurance to pay for the whole thing.  By the way, if you want to play armchair lawyer, take a look at the GMA(Good Morning America) video or the local news videos and you will see that Camp and his attorney asked for "only medical",  Why would they go out on public TV and ask for only that, all the bank would have to do is to call his bluff publicly and he would have to accept. OOOOhhh, never thought about that did ya.  Your delusional if you think the Walkers are upstanding, I know of at least 5 deals where the Walkers screwed investors or contractors doing work for them.

By the way, considering that the robber had body armor 70+ rounds of ammo, 2 guns, a hunting knife and a police scanner and had written his "last will and testament" the day of the robbery, do you not think that he planned to kill people and himself that day.  And had Camp not stopped him there would have been a shootout.  Think about it, just from watching the video of the incident you can see that from the time the robber attempted to hop over the tellers desk the cops entered the bank within 1 minute and 35 seconds of that.  Do you really think the robber hops over the tellers desk goes 60 feet to where all the employees are gets the keys, gets in the drawers, gets the money, gets back over the tellers desk, out the front door and then onto his motorcycle, before the cops get him.    Answer.....NO.  So he heres the police location over the scanner, freaks out knowing he can't get away and he goes out in a blaze of glory.

So big question.....If your loved one is being fatally attacked and a passerby could save them.  Should they stop and think about the consequence to their own health or ability to work afterward or should they do what used to be commonplace in this country which is to put others immediate needs ahead of yours.  Shame on the bank for not doing the right thing.

Think about it, If my kid was going to get hit by a car and you dove and pushed my child to safety but you got hurt in the process.  I would be indebted to you forever, if you could not work I would do whatever I could(Sell my car(s), house, take a loan out to repay you.)  Once Camp had ensured the safety of everybody, Camp had nothing to negotiate with to get the Bank to do the right thing.

Get a clue, Character counts, I think Matthew going to Jail is sort of like God letting the Walkers feel a little pain for how they treat other less fortunate people.

 high risk merchant account
high risk merchant account

Thanks for sharing.This is going to help me alot. I've started using credit cards and was unaware about many facts of the useage. I am glad I visited here. But, I also think if creditcards used effiiently can help alot in saving too. 

Comesaroundgoesaround
Comesaroundgoesaround

This absolutely cracks me up.  Remember back in 2010.  How they treated that contractor who stopped that bank robbery and got shot.  I know the guy and let me tell you, Daniel Walker cares nothing about doing the "right thing" he only cares about the bottom line.  They absolutely railroaded that guy.  I remember that the bank lied and stated that they were going to pay all of Mr. Camps medical bills.  Turns out that there insurance would only cover $10k, and his medical bills were over $80k.  That is the only reason he brought suit against them.  The bank fought tooth and nail to NOT help him out, they went so far as to lie on national TV eluding to the fact that Mr. Camp was suing them even though they offered to pay ALL of his medical bills (Trying to make him look like an ambulance chaser, trying to ruin his character).  

So after this guy risked his life to ensure the safety of everybody in the bank and got shot in the process and leaving him out of work for over 6 months with not a dollar.  The bank tried to ruin his reputation with their lies, forcing Mr. Camp into another line of work to provide for his family.

And then you have some "silver spoon" Chapman University punk(Matthew Walker) running his Daddy's business using customer funds as if they were an ATM.  Little spoiled brat getting all the perks and bennies of not having to work like a real man, leaching off the family fortune.Up until he/they got caught the Walkers acted like they were above reproach, like they were superior, philanthropy etc.  Let me tell you the only reason they do that kind of stuff is for marketing/ image etc.  They can afford to do some extravaganza at the Long Beach Yacht Club but they can't afford to use their insurance policy to pay the medical bills of an honest man who risked his life for others.  

If Mr. Camp was painted as some "sue happy money grubber" then Matthew Walker certainly has to at least be"the devil himself".  But that is not how it will play, the Walkers have some high up connections, Matthew will do the least time possible and then when he gets out some high class marketing company will wipe the internet clean of any of his wrongdoings and have a photo op of him feeding the homeless and he'll go back to sucking off the family nipple.  It must suck to doubt if you could ever make it on your own, without the help of great grand dad, dad etc. Matthew nor his dad Daniel have the character or tenacity to ever make it on their own.

Hey Dan, sucks to know your own kid has significantly less character than somebody you portrayed as classless leach!!!!!! 

MT in Long Beach
MT in Long Beach

So Becky - in your words, Matt is a nice guy. he made bad decisions. I can't help but laugh at how pitiful that is - a thief is a thief. He stole, not hundreds, not thousands, but millions! If you had children and one was molested and you knew the molestor, would you write that he is a "nice guy" or if a drunk killed one of your relatives or friends, but they are a "nice guy" would that lessen the severity of the crime?

Problem is Bebcky, since you knew Matt, you probably had a school crush or something. Tell it like it is, he is a tief who stole money. He didn;t pay it back, the "Walker" fmaily did not pay it back, the customers of the bank did by fees, those fees and interest rates is what earns the bank money and the bank maintains insurance for this type of thing. So in the end, we pay for the theft, but it's ok because Matthew J Walker (who committed a crime and should be jailed and punished for said crime) is a nice guy. Well you have a nice day.

Charlie
Charlie

Gosh, I use to work there until they wrongfully terminated me. Then they protested my unemployment benefits by appealing twice. They lost the case twice. This whole time while they were trying to leave my family in dyer straits, this case was apparently going on. This spoiled rotton rich kid stealing 2 million. Dan Walker is really passive, but he is the president and he is responsible for who he hires and he is also a Father who is responsible for how he raised his child. The bank is family owned, so basically the family is stealing from their customers. The bank should be shut down. There reputation is destroyed and they really should stop preaching the Christian values they claim to leverage their business and feed off others spiritual vulnerability. I taped my hearing and really they should be ashamed. The udge looked disgusted.

20ftJesus
20ftJesus

I sure hope he earned oodlz from his investment in Xoodlz

nobody_mojave
nobody_mojave

Well....I DO KNOW Matt and I can honestly say that he deserves this and way more.This isn't the first time, or the second time that this has happened!  He stole when he was a the G.G.branch (find bob fish, the old branch manager)....and all his family did was move him to main branch to work next to his grandpa (which Matt couldn't handle and quit!) As far as Wendy walker (previously known as Wendy White)....Ha!  Matt set up a bogus account under her fathers name at the G.G. branch where he stole back end loan money and then deposited into a bogus accountset up under Wendy's dad name!  Matt'sonly "remorse" is that he got caught! (AGAIN!)......... I can go far more into it, but I will refrain at this point!

responder
responder

 You bring up a good point. They hired a Public Relations firm, HKA Associates, to try and mask their poor image, but it really didn't work. I know, because I worked in the marketing department. Even my professor snarled when he heard I worked at Farmers and Merchants because they heard about the news about that robbery you are speaking of. This reflects who they really are and honestly it is so plainly obvious to me that the brave man who risked his life should have been compensated for. In a situation like that, when you only have seconds to think... no one will ever know what the armed robber would have done. The brave man's scuffle may have saved my work mate's life who was there hiding behind the stairs trembling. She might have been killed. As far as I am concerned this brave man saved lives who were staff of Farmers and Merchants Bank. The President and senior executive officers should show appreciation since the scenario could have been fatal and this also would have shown their concern for their staff, which apparently was not at the top of the list. I know from my own experience that F&M will pay more in lawyer fees than what the case is worth, I believe for the sole purpose of winning..or some kind of radical conservative principle. But what principle? Must be from some type of eccentric upbringing that has developed its own set of principles, which I can say is not the common ones we share in society. Poor Matt is really going to get a taste of the outside world who do not believe in these principles. He's been living in a bubble with strange ideology mixed with religion.

Charlie
Charlie

You are so correct and it is no wonderthere are people screaming 99%. If my kid ended up in prison for this type ofhigh crime for 20 years, I would ask myself, “Where did I go wrong?” The Dad,Daniel Walker, wants to disassociate himself with his son’s demise. He shouldtake some accountability. I know from experience, that Dan wishes to remainpassive. He is well aware of some of the “bad guys” who work there and leavesit to the Human Resource Manager to do the dirty work, whom I might add is a badguy, herself. There really is no one there to report this stuff to. For everytime Matt paid an interest payment on that line of credit, he would have tothink again and again and again about what he was doing. This is not a minorerror. It was out right methodical. The bank is family owned. How do peopleknow for certain that money didn’t get funneled back to other family members? Whatif Matt is the scapegoat? For the customer’s sake, authorities should shut downthe bank in order to protect the depositors. The family can’t be trusted and itreally isn’t that difficult for the owners to manipulate digital financialinstruments to have money streaming into their pockets.  People, take your money out of there.

Becky
Becky

One member of the family is not the entire family. I use to work there too and actually knew Matt. He is a nice guy. He just made bad decisions and he took full responsibility. You can't blame the entire family because of the actions of one member.

Smiley2013
Smiley2013

@nobody_mojave

@Becky

I used to work there as well and watched one Korean speaking woman receive an award at the yearly banquet, then she was fired the next week after 5 years of service, and they challenges her unemployment benefits claim. I know because she came into the branch asking why, why, why, unbeknownst to her it was the higher ups that are playing hardball with her challenging her ignorance in actually challenging their denial of her benefits. This was at the time of the Camp situation. I'll tell ya, they were in full PR mode .. I sat in meetings listening to the grotesque instructions and company line we were being fed .. so glad I quit and have it so much better now.

Bad company, underpays many .. one .. told me she hadn't had a raise in TEN YEARS .. I was amazed .. but she took it and was content .. and didn't care and was tired of fighting for anything. Total submission.

Panayiota
Panayiota

Charlie you have sour grapes because you got fired.  Anyone who has ever spent time around the Walker family knows that they are all stand up, honest, people.  Matthew  did something really stupid and he is paying for it.  He pleaded guilty and will go to jail.  He will pay for his crime for the rest of his life.  Matt is not a bad guy, He thought he would put the money back before anyone found outand  that was stupid.  I pray for him and the entire family.  This hurt all of them.  His wife and beautiful children are paying for it too.  There is no reason to go on here and bad mouth the entire family.  In regard to Mr. Camp, the insurance paid $10,000, rather than contact the bank about the difference or wait to see if they were going to do anything else, he ran and got an attorney that asked for the moon, because that is what attorney's do.  If anyone made Mr. Camp look like a creep it was his attorney.

Smith12347
Smith12347

Matt is waiting for his prison sentence by playing polo in the desert indio eldorado polo club

Smiley2013
Smiley2013

@Becky

I used to work there as well and watched one Korean speaking woman receive an award at the yearly banquet, then she was fired the next week after 5 years of service, and they challenges her unemployment benefits claim. I know because she came into the branch asking why, why, why, unbeknownst to her it was the higher ups that are playing hardball with her challenging her ignorance in actually challenging their denial of her benefits. This was at the time of the Camp situation. I'll tell ya, they were in full PR mode .. I sat in meetings listening to the grotesque instructions and company line we were being fed .. so glad I quit and have it so much better now.

Bad company, underpays many .. one .. told me she hadn't had a raise in TEN YEARS .. I was amazed .. but she took it and was content .. and didn't care and was tired of fighting for anything. Total submission.

Kwilkins03
Kwilkins03

I absolutely agree with you. The bank is very reputable and Matt made some bad decisions. The others that post on this site obviously know nothing about the family or Matt.

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