The federal government (plaintiff) prosecuted Yvonne Sayklay (defendant) for embezzling bank funds, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 656. The trial evidence established that the bank in question employed Sayklay as its bookkeeper. This gave Sayklay access to other employees' bank-account numbers, blank counter checks, and a check-encoding machine. Sayklay used this access to create fraudulent counter checks bearing the employees' account numbers, and cash those checks for her own use. Eventually one of the employees discovered Sayklay's siphoning of his bank account, and she was arrested. The trial judge denied Sayklay's motion for acquittal, which asserted either a failure of proof or a variance between the accusation and the proof. The jury found Sayklay guilty, and she appealed to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.