A federal grand jury last week indicted executives of two Monroe, LA-based home care agencies for a check-kiting scheme involving millions of dollars.

United Home Care and Trinity Home Healthcare Chief Operating Officer Charles Simpson and Chief Financial Officer Charles Gardner were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and four counts of bank fraud, according to Acting U.S. Attorney Alexander C. Van Hook.

 The indictment alleges the two men were involved in a scheme to defraud Origin Bank, Peoples Band and Louisiana National Bank (LNB) by improperly obtaining money and credits. 

According to Van Hook, Simpson and Gardner orchestrated and executed a check kite between accounts at Origin Bank and LNB where they deposited hundreds of checks among numerous accounts they controlled at both banks. The executives then took advantage of the float when they passed the checks, timing the exchanges to artificially inflate the account balances. In doing so, the two banks had to honor checks and payments drawn against accounts with insufficient funds, putting both financial institutions at risk.

The indictment also alleges the two men added Peoples Bank to the scheme when they learned accounts under their control at LNB had an overdraft and the bank would only accept a certified check to cover the deficit.

The scheme allegedly took place between April of 2016 and March of 2017.