A federal judge sentenced a former TD Bank executive to 18 months in prison on Wednesday for using a company credit card to buy $1,000 bottles of champagne and $750 lap dances at strip clubs, amassing a total debt of $240,000.

Jeffrey Burnham, 42, of Arundel had already pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Portland to a felony charge of theft by a bank officer.

In handing down the sentence, Judge George Singal said Burnham did not steal because he needed the money or because he had a substance abuse problem. Burnham said he spent the bank’s money at strip clubs in Maine, Massachusetts, New York and Florida as a way to help him cope with the stress of his job, which included having to fire subordinates who did not meet sales goals.

In a tearful presentation to the court, Burnham apologized to his former bank colleagues and to his family.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Craig Wolff had asked for 27 months in prison, which is at the low end of a sentencing guideline that went as high as 33 months.

Burnham’s attorney, Sarah Churchill, asked that he be sentenced to house arrest so he could continue being the primary care provider for his three young children while his wife works.


Burnham used his TD Bank corporate credit card 72 times at strip clubs, including spending hundreds of dollars for strippers to spend several hours with him at the clubs and buying drinks for other customers. Singal questioned Churchill about how someone could spend so much money in such a short period of time at a strip club.

Burnham was a vice president and regional mortgage sales manager at the bank’s Falmouth office. He left TD Bank in February 2012, after about 14 years with the company and its predecessor, Peoples Heritage Bank. He went on to work for Kennebunk Savings Bank as senior vice president overseeing the bank’s retail banking operations, but left in November 2013 after the company uncovered irregularities in his use of a company credit card.

Singal questioned Burnham’s remorse, noting that even after TD Bank confronted Burnham about personal use of the credit card and after he had been notified he was the target of an FBI probe and likely prosecution, Burnham still spent thousands on the company’s credit card at strip clubs.

Burnham said he kept the impending investigation secret from his family and did not confide in anyone. He said that final month of his life before his initial scheduled appearance in federal court was a “blur” and he remembers little about it. He said that on the day he was first supposed to report to court a year ago, he tried to take his own life, but has been undergoing therapy consistently since then.

Singal sentenced Burnham to a year and a half in prison, three years of supervised release and restitution of $240,514.54.

Churchill asked that Burnham be given a month to report to prison so he could help his children understand what was happening and arrange for child care. However, Singal said he was concerned about Burnham’s mental health and safety and ordered him to report to prison immediately.

Burnham used his corporate card to charge $10,088 on Dec. 2, 2011, at a business he listed on his expenses as “La Grange Boston MA,” which operates the Centerfolds strip club in Boston.

After Burnham left TD Bank, an employee opened his corporate credit card statement and noticed two “suspicious” charges, one to “La Grange Boston MA” and another to “Kenkev II, Inc. Portland ME,” which operates PT’s Show Club in Portland.

The FBI learned that Burnham charged about $35,000 to his corporate credit card in less than a month from January to February 2012 at Centerfolds and PT’s Show Club.

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