Aubrey Lee Price
Before and after: US banker Aubrey Lee Price has been caught by police after he was presumed dead by a judge Glynn County detention center

A US banker accused of swindling £12.5m from investors and was thought to have committed suicide will face trial after being captured alive.

Aubrey Lee Price and his wife were declared dead in 2012 after the couple had seemingly vanished.

It is alleged he forged financial records in an attempt to wrong-foot the hunt for him before he disappeared, sending letters to family and friends, hinting that he would commit suicide.

The couple's disappearance came after Price appeared to admit embezzling and squandering millions of clients' and Montgomery Bank & Trust's money.

"I created false statements, covered up my losses and deceived and hurt the very people I was trying to help," the letter said.

Since emerging alive he has now made a plea deal with authorities who say he could spend the rest of his life in jail.

Price faces 17 federal counts of bank fraud, which carry up to 30 years in prison and a $1m (£600,000) fine.

Prosecutors allege 115 investors put $40m (£24m) into his investment firm, but he lost much of their money between 2009 and 2010.

He then became a director at Montgomery Bank & Trust after his investors bought a controlling stake in the bank.

It is alleged Price said he would invest in US Treasury securities, but instead he diverted money to other accounts he controlled.

Price was arrested on New Year's Eve and raised suspicions about his identity while he was being questioned.

Many of Price's assets have already been sold and authorities are still working to claw back money for investors, including $1.8m (£1.07m) life insurance payments made after Price was declared dead.