Receiver Says Credit Union Was Looted

     NEWARK (CN) – The CEO and CFO of the Peoples First Choice Federal Credit Union covered up $3 million in bad debts and allowed the bank to be sacked in a fraudulent minibus lending program that diverted at least $387,000 to Mel and Dean Transportation Corp., receivers claim in a RICO complaint in Federal Court.

     The credit union went belly up in May-June 2007. The receivers sue, among others, former CEO Henry Slootmaker, former CFO Jolene Constantine aka Jolene Smith, and former Business Development Officer Dean Ramirez.
     The 46-page complaint describes a number of allegedly spurious loans that funneled money into Mel and Dean Transportation Corp., or North Bergen. Defendants Dean Ramirez and Melicio Mendez were its principals, the complaint states.
     The receiver is represented by Michael Saffer with Mandelbaum Salsburg of West Orange, N.J. He demands punitive damages.

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