A former Bank of America employee who had authority to approve short sales is accused of taking more than $1 million in bribes to sign off on 18 sales of bank-owned homes in Southern California at prices below what the bank would have approved.

Kevin Lauricella, 28, of Thousand Oaks, has pleaded not guilty after being accused in a 28-count grand jury indictment of falsifying bank records, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Bank of America told the Times that Lauricella was fired in 2011, and that it has been cooperating with an FBI investigation. Three other defendants have signed off on plea agreeements that suggest Lauricella’s arrest was the result of a long-running probe into short-sale manipulation in Southern California. Source: latimes.com

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