MILWAUKEE – A woman was fired from her job of five years at a major US bank last week after it was discovered she had shoplifted -- in 1972.
Yolanda Quesada, 58, from Milwaukee, lost her job at the mortgage unit of Wells Fargo after the bank ran a background check which turned up a shoplifting charge from when she was just out of high school.
She said she was very good at her job and had numerous awards and certificates from her five years of service at Wells Fargo to prove it, MSNBC reported.
"I think there's more important things in life than something I did 40 years ago," she said.
Quesada said she had no idea that Wells Fargo was looking into her background, which included an FBI check, until she received a letter last week.
"I just got the FBI report on Saturday in the mail. Monday, they said you're fired. They never let me say what happened, explain myself, nothing," Quesada told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
The background check found that Quesada had been arrested twice in 1972 for shoplifting, she was fined $50 for the first offense and placed on one year of probation for the second.
Quesada said she is ashamed that she stole clothes from a Milwaukee department store but she was one of 12 children and needed something to wear for work.
She said it was unfair her youthful indiscretion cost her a job 40 years later, especially as she worked in the bank's customer service division answering phones, and never handled money as part of her job.
Changes to banking regulations last year mean that Wells Fargo has had to run background checks on all of its mortgage team employees, including a fingerprint check with the FBI, a company spokesman told the Journal Sentinel.
"Because Wells Fargo is an insured depository institution, we are bound by federal law that generally prohibits us from hiring or continuing the employment of any person who we know has a criminal record involving dishonesty or breach of trust," Wells Fargo spokesman Jim Hines said.