More FBI Raids: First Colonial Bank, Now Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Taken Down by SIGTARP
Wait, wait, it's not over! This is less than an hour old at this point but there's more. In case you missed it: Colonial Bank Raided by Feds, TARP Cops
And the plot thickens! Taylor, Bean & Whitaker gets a piece of the SIGTARP action. We'll keep an eye on what in the hell is going on and keep you in the loop as always, as soon as we figure out wtf is going on, that is.
Don't miss the awesome SIGTARP slicker in the Ocala photo. I want one, it'll go awesome with my fuzzy Fed hoodie and Obama socks.
Federal agents descended on the Ocala headquarters of wholesale mortgage lender Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. Monday morning and locked it down.
"I can confirm for you that our office, the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, has executed two search warrants today in the state of Florida," said Kristine Belisle, communications director. "It's our investigation. It's our agents that have executed search warrants."
Belisle said the warrants were sealed.
"I can't provide any further information because of the nature of an on-going investigation," Belisle said.
Ocala police officers manned the locked doors outside of the Northeast 14th Street offices, allowing only customers of the company's Platinum Community Bank to enter the building.
SIGTARP oversees the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). Under TARP, the U.S. Department of the Treasury may purchase or insure up to $700 billion of troubled assets, which include residential or commercial mortgages. The agency investigates cases of fraud, waste and abuse of TARP funds and programs.
"We have cooperated with the FBI on a search warrant relating to dealings we have had with Colonial Bank," TBW Chairman Lee Farkas said. "Taylor Bean has had a large lending relationship with Colonial Bank and has for many years. The company is a borrower and does a lot of business with Colonial Bank.
When asked what the warrant requested, Farkas said, "Just documents. No people. Just documents."
Asked what the documents were, he replied, "I really don't know."
Farkas said that the warrant does not concern TBW-owned Platinum Community Bank.
In April, TBW signed a agreement to put up half of a $300 million equity investment to help infuse the troubled Colonial BancGroup, holding company of Colonial Bank, with headquarters in Montgomery, Ala., and help the bank meet a regulatory deadline. Farkas said that deal ended Friday. At the time of the agreement, Colonial, which has suffered from heavy loan losses, had applied for funding under the U.S. Treasury's TARP. To be eligible for TARP funds, Colonial was required to come up with $300 million in private equity.
On July 27, Colonial BancGroup consented to a Cease and Desist order by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Alabama State Banking Department.
Colonial, on Friday reported a second quarter loss of $606 million.
The Orlando Sentinel reported that the FBI and U.S. Treasury agents also raided the regional headquarters of Colonial Bank in downtown Orlando this morning.
What an absolutely exciting day it's turning out to be! Good thing I didn't switch to unleaded after all. And here I thought it was going to be a quiet week...