Jason Christopher Devillier, age 45, was sentenced on Thursday,October 20, for his convictions in connection with a scheme to defraud Whitney Bank. This summer, Devillier pled guilty to bank fraud and fraudulent receipt of bank funds.
Chief Judge Jackson sentenced Devillier to a term of 33 months in the Bureau of Prisons, to be followed by a term of 3 years supervised release. Devillier was also sentenced to pay total restitution of $474,410.74 to Whitney Bank. Additionally, Devillier was ordered to forfeit assets of $474,410.74 and pay a $25,000 fine.
These convictions arose from Devillier’s ownership and operation of ABC123, L.L.C. (“ABC123”), a payment processing company for private and parochial primary and secondary schools located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In order for ABC123 to perform its payment processing services for the schools, parents established accounts through ABC123’s website, which enabled parents to send money electronically to the schools for tuition, cafeteria fees, and other school-related fees. ABC123 collected the funds paid by parents and transmitted them to financial institutions designated by each respective school. As a result, Devillier had access to the schools’ bank account information, including routing and account numbers.
Devillier accomplished his scheme to defraud Whitney Bank through his use of the Automated Clearing House (“ACH”) network. Devillier previously admitted that, from November of 2012 through July of 2013, he diverted funds from ABC123’s Whitney Bank account (“the ABC123 account”) into his personal account and other accounts, in amounts ranging from $30 to $50,000, through inappropriate ACH batch transactions. For each fraudulent transaction, Devillier posted numerous and substantial false and fraudulent credits to the ABC123 account, which he falsely represented as authorized withdrawals from accounts belonging to the schools. In effect, these false and fraudulent ACH credits posted by Devillier made it appear as though the ABC123 account had sufficient funds for withdrawals from said account. Before Whitney Bank was able to detect and reverse the false and fraudulent ACH credits, Devillier transferred funds through ACH debits from the ABC123 account to various personal and business accounts belonging to him and others. As a result of Devillier’s fraudulent conduct, Whitney Bank suffered substantial losses.