Former Bank President and Developer Sentenced to Prison for Bank Fraud

Former Bank President and Developer Sentenced to Prison for Bank Fraud

04/08/2013 BY: ESTHER CHO

A former bank president and a real estate developer in Louisiana were sentenced for conspiring to commit bank fraud, the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) announced Friday.

U.S. District Judge Nannette Jolivette Brown sentenced Reginald R. Harper, the former CEO of First Community Bank of Hammond, Louisiana, to 24 months in prison, while Troy A. Fouquet, a local developer, was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Harper and Fouquet were also ordered to pay close to $571,000 in restitution.

In 2004, Harper loaned more than $2 million to Fouquet so he could buy land to develop into subdivisions and then build homes on them to sell to prospective homebuyers, according to court documents. When the Harper and Fourquet were having trouble finding qualified homebuyers, they used “straw” buyers. Harper also made it appear as though prospective homebuyers had more money than they did when providing loans. To avoid reporting the delinquency on the loans, Fouquet provided insufficient checks, which Harper would accept and use to credit loan payments to First Community.

In a release, Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for TARP, said the scheme “caused significant losses to First Community Bank and jeopardized the bank’s financial stability and ability to serve its community,”

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