Wanda Greene pleads not guilty to new federal charges

FILE - A federal grand jury returned a 23-count indictment that accuses former Buncombe County manager Wanda Greene of wire fraud, federal program fraud and money laundering in connection with a $2.3 million life insurance scheme. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

Former Buncombe County Manager Wanda Greene pleaded not guilty to new fraud charges in federal court Wednesday morning.

The U.S. Government accuses Greene of using more than $2 million of county funds to illegally buy whole life insurance policies for herself, her son Michael Greene, and several other county employees.

The county says all the employees who received a policy have now reassigned theirs to the county, except for Wanda and Michael Greene.

In court Wednesday, the judge forced the prosecution to identify the insurance agent through which the policies were allegedly purchased as Bo Cauble. This was so Cauble could be added to a list of people Greene cannot contact.

At one point, one of Greene's attorneys Noell Tin said they "hope to resolve this amicably in the near future, but we'll see."

Greene's attorneys also said the former county manager has sold her home and the proceeds are now in their escrow account.

Greene and her attorneys did not respond to questions entering or exiting court.

The judge released Greene on a number of conditions, including she does not have contact with Cauble or anyone who received one of the whole life insurance policies. Greene is also required to seek permission from her probation officer for any financial transaction over $10,000. The prosecution cited concerns about Greene hiding money as the reason why.

Greene and her son Micheal Greene are facing other federal charges related to the misuse of public funds.

Prosecutors say Greene and her son, who formerly served as the county’s business intelligence manager, improperly spent about $200,000 of taxpayer money. They have both pleaded not guilty to those charges.

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