CHAPTER 27

A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

DANIEL NITA

Adrian Marinescu was a young man who seemed outwardly like any other growing up in Brasov, Romania. He finished high school in town, attended college and was looking for a job. His family called on their collective professional contacts to try to get Adrian a job out of school and help him off to a good start as an adult. Both of his parents had strong careers and networks of associates; his father was a retired military officer and his mother was still active in the army. Opportunity came Adrian’s way when a distant relative, Mary Anne, offered him a job that would allow him to settle into a quiet and safely engaged life.

In the beautiful mountain town of Brasov, people enjoyed simple, peaceful lives. As in many other small towns, the local economy received important support from credit institutions. One such establishment in Brasov was the well-rated Astar Bank. Founded in 2000, Astar achieved a strong market position in a few short years and was one of the top ten banks in the nation for several years in a row. Astar was a well-organized company with a professional management team and very strong employees occupying key positions.

Two factors helped Astar Bank hold its position: a skilled sales team and a strong control group, consisting of internal control, anti-fraud and compliance teams. Mary Anne led the internal controls department at Astar and had earned top management’s trust in her professional and leadership abilities. ...

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