CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A federal grand jury on Wednesday returned a five-count indictment charging former Palmetto State Bank CEO Russell Laffitte with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, bank fraud, and misapplication of bank funds.

Laffitte is accused of helping Alex Murdaugh and suspended attorney Cory Fleming divert nearly $2 million from clients in three separate instances.

But Laffitte previously claimed he was duped by Murdaugh by trusting settlement money for clients was going to the right place.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina said the indictment, filed July 20, alleges that Laffitte conspired with a bank customer to commit wire fraud and bank fraud while working for Palmetto State Bank.

“Specifically, the indictment alleges that Laffitte – while serving as conservator for the bank customer’s personal injury clients – extended $355,000 in personal loans to himself and $990,000 in personal loans to the bank customer from funds held at PSB and belonging to the personal injury clients,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

The Federal Grand Jury said Laffitte knew that the funds being loaned to the bank customer were used to cover hundreds of thousands of dollars in overdraft on the bank customer’s personal account.

Moreover, the indictment alleges that Laffitte knew the bank customer used funds stolen from other personal injury clients to pay back the loans.

“Laffitte, as conservator or personal representative for the personal injury clients, received disbursement checks from the law firm, then negotiated and distributed the funds according to and at the bank customer’s direction. At the bank customer’s direction, Laffitte transferred the disbursed settlement funds into bank money orders, cash, and other wire transfers,” the district attorney’s office said.

The indictment alleges that Laffitte collected $391,781.07 in fees for serving as conservator and personal representative.