AMERICAN PONZI BANKSTERS an Inside Job … The REPO Quantitative FIAT Easing of It


The  Grand American PONZI SCHEME


The Worst in Human History


The Dirty Rotten Real Estate and Bankster Crimes of the last 100 Years

Long before the BUBBLES of the 80s 90s and 2000s

25 Years BEFORE  Occupy


Bail Outs for TRILLIONS

Follow the  DIRT BAGS



Loot the Banks then a GLOBAL EXPANSION …  JBW

Adventures in Flipping, Churning, Dirt Dealing and Daisy Chains …  Looting, Vanishing and Laundering TRILLIONS ….  Another  Friggens  Story

Judson B. Witham …. SON OF THE SWAMP FOX

Western Bank


SwampFox (1)

The DIRTIEST  Land and Banking Swindles in the History of  EARTH

A Special Note to Renee Wyler and Billie Powers /  William Wagener

The FAKING of the  Docs and FAKING of the Records …  LOTS of  Trix have been involved for  MANY MANY  Decades  ( Centuries Actually )  ….    JBW

LOTS OF INDICTMENTS … Land & Bank Scams 101 | Trillions Stolen … Real Estate Fraud Mecca of Planet Earth USA USA USA The GREATEST … The Great Texas BankJob … Altman, Clifford and the BCCI Operations from UPTOWN HOUSTON … ….. 20 › hundreds-texas…lose-land-in-massive-scam.html.

FAVORITE S&L FELONIES – November 5, 1990 – Fortune…/index.htmNov 5, 1990 – Land flips:The fraudulent inflation of a property’s value through multiple sales. … RobertLuera 48, proprietor of a Mexican restaurant in Redding, California, … Janis Lee 48, a clerk in charge of handling new customer accounts at Surety ….. of dollars in loans from American Pioneer Savings in Stuart, Florida.

      The defendants allegedly prepared fraudulent loan application packages involving vacant lots in Houston ‘s Runningbrook subdivision and elsewhere, claiming they had 20-year-old homes on them.

     The defendant companies allegedly obtained loans from Pioneer by submitting bogus documents, including credit applications, promissory notes, deeds of trust, property appraisals, title policy commitments and proof of insurance. At least three potential witnesses have said they falsified such documents for a small fee or at a boyfriend’s request, Zager said.

The list of 19 defendants is headed by William J. Cartwright Sr. of Corpus Christi , named in the lawsuit as president and majority owner of Mortgage CreditCorp and two other companies there, The Cartwright Group Inc. and First State Investors Inc.

Other defendants from Corpus Christi are Cartwright’s sons, William Jr. and Robert H. Cartwright, and Veronica J. Cartwright, who are officers and stockholders in the three companies; Rosmare Saldivar and Melvin Smoots, officers of Mortgage CreditCorp and The Cartwright Group Inc.; William H. Whittle, an attorney and stockholder in Mortgage CreditCorp; and James P. Page. The companies are also defendants.

The Houston defendants are John S. Pipkin, an officer and majority stockholder in Beau-Bay Development Corp. here; his brother Roger W. Pipkin III and his son Roger W. Pipkin IV, both officers and stockholders in the company; and three persons employed by C&P Realty here, attorney Robert L. Vickers, real estate appraiser Steven F. Thomae and Kelly Alan Wohlers.

The lawsuit accuses the defendants of racketeering, which allows the court to award triple damages if proven. Pioneer is seeking $14 million in actual damages and $42 million in punitive damages.

     Zager said federal marshals served Black’s freeze orders Thursday after wire transfers were traced to the Houston area accounts from the Robstown accounts of Mortgage CreditCorp, which Hoyt had frozen. The latter turned out to contain about $300,000. Up to $14 million may be frozen if found.

Zager said the Mason Road account here is in the name of Vickers, who denies any connection with it. Zager said another attorney here withdrew about $10,000 from the account on Wednesday, emptying it.

Zager said Vickers, 58, was sentenced to five years in prison on Oct. 12, 1988, in Arizona for money laundering and conducting an illegal enterprise.  ( FROM PINEWOOD VILLAGE  Eikle Etheridge / WG  Horne III /  Clesson Western Bank Land Swindles  )

Investigator Clyde Wilson said he reached Vickers by phone in a Yuma , Ariz. , prison, and Vickers told him his name is being used by others, but he is not involved in the scheme. Zager said Vickers’ signature, provided by his wife here, does not match those on the allegedly bogus documents.

“The individual is handicapped by coming face to face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists”.

J. Edgar Hoover, former head of the FBI



FACTOID ….  Ole  Judson was working at InterFin Plaza during North and Secord’s ( Bushs and Clintons )  Days of FUND RAISING at the Galleria …. Ole Judson built the 26th Floor at the Houstonian Estates ….  IMAGINE THAT



Enjoy the FACTS on the  Mid West Depot and  Charlie Wilson and the Bush Clinton Oliver North /  TRIAD  MAFIA




MotherAnd Dad2

It goes way way way way  BEYOND  Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America  WAY WAY WAY  Beyond



SwampFox <>12:18 PM (6 minutes ago)6-11-19
to FinCEN, Gerry, Richard, billie, Kim, foia, CFPB_FOIA, CFPB_FOIA, FOIA-PA, gcraig, georgia, bcc: Jacqueline

What would Paul Wellstone have to say <—<<<

Colin McGinnis

Policy Director at US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs

202-224-2654Fax: (202) 224-5137The Looting, Vanishing and Laundering of  TRILLIONS     Thank You for Your several Phone Calls.My record on exposing Financial  Scheming and Scamming dates back to PRE EXPOSURE of the S&L and BANKING  FIASCO that came outta  TEXAS in  1982  after a  HUGE  STINK was made about it  WITH THE FBI  and  the  STATE AUTHORITIES …..   By  ME.


     I am Judson Witham,  the Man that raised HELL in Texas and exposed the Banking and S&L  Swindles of the 80s  90s  and the  CURRENT  DEBACLE.     The  FBI, DOJ, FHFA, HUD and CFPB  are  all  CONCEALING RECORDS on the  Mechanics , the Nuts and Bolts of the  PREDATORY  Marketing  of  the  Subprime  Predatory  Mortgages  (  RBMS  Rackets  )     The issue is  the  SCINTER  and  TACTICS employed to  BAIT and LURE the Consuming Public into this  NIGHTMARE.    Yes  the  Consuming Public was  BAITED.     I am  DEMANDING  the USA  Inc. and it’s  Agencies   COMPLY WITH  FOIA  and  release all the  Intelligence and Investigation Files  on   RACKETEERS  such as  the  CUGNO SCAMMERS  and the Pioneer, Paramount and Premier  Mortgage  MAFIAS.     The  STONEWALLING  and  Secrecy  of CFPB,  FHFA, HUD and the CFPB  is as serious a Whitewashing and Cover Up as any in American History.     ENOUGH IS ENOUGH  ….  All the  Intelligence and Investigation Files  MUST  Immediately  be  released to the American Public.ANY QUESTIONS  SEE     26 Billion  Settlement for a 16 Trillion RESERVE NOTE  Crime Spreeand especially enjoy84  Captures  since  2000


     The  ENTIRE  Unlawful Racket of  Baiting and Luring  People into the  CRIME SCENE of activities such as JP Morgan Chase, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse and Select Portfolio Services etc etc etc etc Et Al  has cost the People of the United States on a  MASSIVE  GARGANTUAN SCALE.   These  Swindles and Scams have been ongoing in the WORLD and have their very roots in the  MEGA  MESS  I exposed in Harris and Montgomery County Texas back in the Early 80s.



CAN YOU SAY BENGHAZI  and 13 Hours …. You know 33,000 Destroyed EMails


Yes right next door to Cutter Bill’s Western Wear the Galleria and WESTERN BANK on Westheimer …. UpTown Houston just South of where ROLAND CARNABY was gunned down and the Bush Suite at the Houstonian Estates ….  LAMAR  TERRACE ….  The  TRIAD

The TRIAD and Martin Harris’s Hat … SEER This Joe Smith … The ……All from Harris and Montgomery County with the WHOLE TRIAD MAFIA …. Gives NEW LIGHT to the Galleria HUH Jeff Sessions and Christopher Wray …

Secret CIA Weapons Depot Linked with Two Texas Locations


May 06, 2014 · And he found an explicit reference in a 1986 memo by Col. Oliver North, a chief figure in the Iran-contra affair. It said the C.I.A. would truck missiles bound for Iran from a military arsenal “to Midwest Depot, Texas,” for preparation, then fly them out of Kelly Air Force Base. Connecting Midwest Depot to yet another historical episode, it …

Secret CIA Weapons Depot Linked with Two Texas Locations


May 06, 2014 · And he found an explicit reference in a 1986 memo by Col. Oliver North, a chief figure in the Iran-contra affair. It said the C.I.A. would truck missiles bound for Iran from a military arsenal “to Midwest Depot, Texas,” for preparation, then fly them out of Kelly Air Force Base. Connecting Midwest Depot to yet another historical episode, it …

  • Author: Bob.Price.Texas

Several of the documents he found traced Midwest Depot’s role without identifying its location, including a 1967 C.I.A. memo linking it to paramilitary training of Cuban exiles before the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion, and a 1987 State Department memo showing that equipment bound for the Nicaraguan contras passed through it.The Times separately identified a 1963 C.I.A. memo discussing 300 tons of C-4 plastic explosives that were available in the “Midwest Depot stocks.” There were no restrictions on its use “because the items have world-wide distribution and are consequently deniable.”And he found an explicit reference in a 1986 memo by Col. Oliver North, a chief figure in the Iran-contra affair. It said the C.I.A. would truck missiles bound for Iran from a military arsenal “to Midwest Depot, Texas,” for preparation, then fly them out of Kelly Air Force Base. Connecting Midwest Depot to yet another historical episode, it added that some missiles would go to “Afghan resistance” fighters battling the Soviets.





Bialystock and Bloom

Of course the bankers love Frydenberg and Hume in these positions, willing to do their bidding; but all other Australians should be worried. From an objective look at their credentials, they may as well be Bialystock and Bloom from The Producers—incompetent scam artists who should be kept as far away from Australia’s financial system as possible.

That is because of their connection to Deutsche Bank—Frydenberg as a former Director and Hume as a former Vice President. It is alarming that the ministers in charge of Australia’s financial system are both from the biggest financial basket-case in the world!

Deutsche Bank is a financial disaster due to its decades betting as a high-roller in the global financial casino, racking up tens of trillions in derivatives gambling debts (now US$49 trillion). As it was riding high it absorbed some of the most reckless financial operations in the world, including other banks such as Bankers Trust, a pioneer of high-risk derivatives gambling, and various hedge funds, and was up to its neck in the illegal market-rigging that has come to light in recent years.

Deutsche Bank’s addiction to financial gambling has left it floundering following the 2008 crash. Its share price has collapsed from €109 in May 2007 to €6.13 today, and the bank is now on death watch. Experts predict that if the share price falls to €5.70, Deutsche bank will implode, and potentially trigger a global meltdown. Since 2016, the IMF has warned that it is “the most important net contributor to systemic risks”, and it is viewed around the world as the most likely candidate to trigger the next episode of Lehman Brothers-style global contagion, except with 20 times more leverage than Lehman.

All global mega banks have dived into financial gambling in recent decades, but it takes some doing to be far and away the worst. Deutsche Bank was once a powerful German industrial bank, but it rushed headlong into securities trading following its merger with London investment bank Morgan Grenfell and then Bankers Trust; recently Deutsche Bank’s management acknowledged their problems originated with their adoption of Anglo-American banking methods, meaning speculation.

This was the wild casino high-roller that Frydenberg and Hume worked for! They epitomise the speculative culture that is a cancer in the financial system, threatening the financial security of all Australians. When Australians demand Glass-Steagall bank separation, to protect deposits by ensuring commercial banks can’t gamble with them, these two do everything in their power to block it not just because they do the banks’ bidding, but because they are conditioned to accept financial recklessness as normal, dangers be damned. After all, bankers like them never carry the can—that’s what bail-in is for!

That’s the danger Australians now face—a banking system allowed by these two Deutsche Bank dunces to gamble itself into financial oblivion, and the bail-in of our savings when it happens. To stop it, join the CEC’s fight!FOR The  Congressional and Senate Record SeeLand Swindles Bank Looting Judson WithamA  Glimpse of My Background

MotherAnd Dad2.jpg

My Parents were in Real Estate Development in New York for many years


My understanding of  Real Estate and Consumer Marketing is considerableThe  MULTI-TRILLION  Reserve Note Fiasco connected to RIGGED ELECTIONS,  BLACK OP WARS and MASSIVE  OFFICIAL CORRUPTIONIs  SECOND TO NONEThe  CFPB,  FBI,  DOJ,  CFPB, SEC, SECRET SERVICE, US POSTAL INSPECTION, HUD and all the  State AGs and the  ABA  Lawyers involved  ALL  MUST  OPEN UP ALL THE RECORDS.   Transparency in Government and the  FOIA  Demands it.  The STATE  Open records Laws also APPLYTHESE  MATTERS  ARE  NOT  GOING AWAY

Judson Witham

notjuris@gmail.comEnjoy all the  VIDEOS

“When you commit armed robbery at a bank, alarms go off, the police come and sometimes there’s a chase,” Collins said.

When you commit bank fraud, nothing happens. There’s not much of immediate consequence.



From John C. McCone to Admiral Poindexter, William Casey, Bud McFarlane, Secord, North, Adkinson, Charlie Wilson, The Clintons, The Bushs, THE TRIAD, Mike Adkinson, Robert Owen, Robert Corson, Bin Ladins,  Adnan Khashoggi,  Manucher Ghorbanifar, Donald Trump …….  THE FACTS FROM HOUSTON are  Crystal Clear


Lets Discuss  SECORD and NORTH’s  FUNDRAISERS  AT THE GALLERIA  just South of the Houstonian Estates





SO Hmmm  Iran Contra, Charlie Wilson’s War, Panama Papers, The Marcos  Fiasco,  Noriega to Gun Walker to Benghazi  …..  Do The Bushs, Clintons, Reagans, Obamas and Trump   RUN ALL THOSE WEAPONS ?

The Clinton Gate State Foundation WEAPONS R US Inc. from Reagan ……Jan 24, 2016 – In the book “Charlie Wilson’s War,” the journalist George Crile III … Hakim pleads guilty to misdemeanor in IranContra case Houston Chronicle … The Land Speculation and Bank Looting Frauds of Texas are even MORE …

The Mafia, CIA and George Bush –

The Mafia, CIA and George Bush. by Pete Brewton SPI Books, NY 1992 … In part of his statement entitled “CIA Gun Running to Iran Goes Back to 1981,” Hemmings stated: … For of the top officers at Skyways came to Bath’s company from Farhad Azima’s Buffalo Airways. The earlier mention George Selma was Director of Maintenanace at Skyways.




33,000 Erased EMails …  You Betcha

FBI’s  FLIR  used to surveil My Residence East of Conroe, Texas

      ASK  Good Ole  James Comey , William Barr and  Robert Mueller about the  SOUTHWEST DEPOT and the  Weapons Flights of Evergreen Airways and Buffalo Airways  ….  THE  FACTS ARE SIMPLE ….  Harris County Texas ….. UpTown Houston at the Galleria was a FAVORITE  Money Collections Spot for  North and Secord …..  JUST THE FACTS

Houston Gulf Airport Explained

A businessperson named James R. Bath purchased the airport on behalf of Salem bin Laden in 1977. Bath received a 5 percent interest in the companies that own and operate the airport. Salem bin Laden  owned the airport for six years before his death in 1988. After Salem bin Laden died, the airport, now owned by his estate, was for sale.


Oct 11, 2015 · TRUTH IN SEARCH OF A UNICORN On Catching A Pinheaded Unicorn: … Dear Mr. Witham, The roots to Houston are deep and wide. … at the S&L scandal of the 80’s and see that the key players were the Iran-Contra-CIA Deep State Mafios and see how the S&L debacle was prelude to the 1999 repeal of Glass-Steagall that prepared the way for the 2000-2008 …

The Real-Life Story Behind ‘Charlie Wilson’s War’ : NPR 24, 2007 – Martin Frost, a former Texas congressman, says Hollywood didn’t … “Charlie Wilson’s War” opened in theaters around the country this past weekend. …. Congress actually passed a law prohibiting aid to the Contras. And so …. Houston socialite Joanne Herring (Julia Roberts) was virulently anti-Communist.

The Largest Covert Operation in CIA History | History News …

The Largest Covert Operation in CIA History. Wilson is 6 feet, 4 inches tall and “handsome, with one of those classic outdoor faces that tobacco companies bet millions on.”. He graduated from the Naval Academy in 1956, eighth from the bottom of his class and with more demerits than any other cadet in Annapolis history.

Blowback? What Blowback? – The Texas Observer…

Aug 1, 2003 – 1With Sprawl and Serial Killers, Houston Noir Packs a Mean Punch … Charlie Wilson‘ s War: The Extraordinary Story of the Largest Covert … for the contras and eventually running completely amok in the Iran/Contra fiasco.

Wilson the Warrior CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR The Extraordinary Story . 25, 2003 – David Johnston reviews book Charlie Wilson’s War: The … recounts the story of Wilson’s personal journey from the East Texas … To help make his case, Wilson exploited one of the decade’s scandals, the Irancontra affair, …

Loeb: A spymaster’s account – Houston Chronicle…/…

Sep 20, 2014 – Charlie Wilson, the late Texas Democrat, to raise awareness, and funds, … He played a key role early on in what became the IranContra … directing the last and largest covert operation of the Cold War in the late 1980s.

  • American Continental Corporation Records circa 1971-1993 …;query=The American Continental Corporation Records consist of correspondence files, architectural and land use plans, promotional and advertising materials, environmental impact reports, regulatory reports, trial recordsattorneys records and financial records relating to the corporation and a …
  • CLIFFORD, ALTMAN SETTLE BCCI CASE – The Washington Posthttps:// and Altman were at the center of a triangle of relationships involving BCCI, First American and their former law firmClifford & Warnke: They were BCCI’s lawyers, the top executives of …
  • ALTMAN, BCCI FOUNDER SAID TO WORK TOGETHER – The …https://…ALTMANBCCI FOUNDER SAID TO WORK TOGETHER. After the takeover of First American, the two lawyers ran the bank for a decade, with Clifford as chairman and Altman as president, at the request of its Arab owners.
  • Bcci Scandal Tarnishes The Good Name Of Clark 02, 1992 · According to an indictment in New York, the money Clifford and Altman received was intended to purchase their help for BCCI’s secret efforts to acquire control of U.S. banks.
  • Clark Clifford, a Major Adviser To Four Presidents, Is …https://…Oct 11, 1998 · Clark Clifford, a Major Adviser To Four Presidents, Is Dead at 91. After an assignment to assess the state of readiness at naval bases on the West Coast, he was drawn into the White House in 1944, where he began a career, as the columnist James Reston once put it, of rescuing American Presidents from disaster.
  • BCCI – The Catbird SeatThe Catbird Seat 1985 the agency had learned so much that it flatly told both the Department of the Treasury and the Department of Commerce that BCCI secretly owned Clark Clifford’s First American Bank. Treasury then informed the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
  • Drug trade controlled by elite, Bush, Clinton, CIA and big … 31, 2018 · He also gave his ideas on the political implications of Clark Clifford‘s chairmanship of First American. He explained that BCCI’s lawyer Robert Altman would simply obstruct the Subcommittee’s investigation into the connection between Noriega and BCCI. In October 1988, federal agents arrested several intermediate managers of BBCI.
  • American Continental Corporation – Company Profile Continental Corporation Overview. American Continental Corporation filed as a Statement & Designation By Foreign Corporation in the State of California and is no longer active.This corporate entity was filed approximately forty-one years ago on Wednesday, December 20, 1978 , according to public records filed with California Secretary of State.
    • Filing Type: Foreign for Profit Corporation
    • State ID: P12051
    • State: Florida
    • Status: Inactive



Sep 10, 1989 · GREAT S&L DEBACLE LABELED AN `INSIDE JOB` ALL THE WAY. … The Looting of America`s Savings and Loans,” details the whos, whats and hows of the S&L …

Book Review: The Greatest Ever Bank Robbery: The Collapse ……

This debacle will end up costing American taxpayers upwards of $500 billion over the next 50 years, dwarfing the scandals of the Credit Mobilier in the Grant Administration or the Teapot Dome in the Harding Administration.

  • Texas KING of Bank Looting and Land Fraud on Vimeo 16, 2015 · COLONIAS are KING in the Vast World of LandSwindles and BANK LOOTINGS in Texas ….. ASK THE CLINTONS. … Texas KING of Bank Looting and Land Fraud. from Witham Judson. 4 years ago.
    • Author: Witham Judson
    • Views: 140
  • Conroe and Houston Texas the Great CESSPOOL Of Land ……Conroe and Houston Texas the Great CESSPOOL Of Land Swindles and Frauds. … Montgomery County COVER UP ARTIST All around CONROE & HUMBLE TEXAS vast land Fraud Cons were engaged in a MASSIVE Bank and S&L Looting Debacle that ROCKED the 1980s. It happened again in the 1990s with Corp ” O’RAT Wall Street Lootings.
  • Beware of the “SUBPRIME” Gangster Bankster “TOXIC ZOMBIE ……/beware-of-the-gangster-banksterranchero-racketeersSep 28, 2016 · THE GREAT TEXAS SHAKE DOWN OF FRAUDS ….. Contracts for Real Estate ….. Sales Contracts for Real Estate ….. Any Contracts for the Sale of Real Estate.
  • The GREAT TEXAS Land Swindles Savings and Loans Banks ……Colonias Land Fraud, the Texas Judicial MAFIA and a … ABSTRACT FIRE across from the Montgomery County Court House and ROY HARRIS’s little Money Machine and the WHOLE LAND CON S&L, Bank Looting Mess all leads to JOHN … Origins and Causes of the S&L Debacle: A Blueprint for Reform—Report to the President and Congress of the …
  • Occupy JAIL – The Great Texas Bank Job – Google Sites …https:// YOU SAY LAND FLIPPING RED FLAGGING COLONIAS FRAUD THREE TIMES … that campaign contributions may have contributed to lax oversight of subprime lenders. … =daisy+chain+land+flip+bank+looting+S%26L+Scandal,+Ponzi … The Great Texas Bank Job  …
  • FRAUD AND GREED PLAYED A PART IN THE S&L DEBACLE | …https:// AND GREED PLAYED A PART IN THE S&L DEBACLE … financial statements and “systematic looting and wasting the assets” of Vernon, which was named for a small Texas …
  • Book Review: fraud cops and bank robbers: The S&L debacle ……Book Review: fraud cops and bank robbers: The S&L debacle revisited. … How Borrowed Billions Sank a Texas S&L Inside Job: The Looting of America’s Savings and Loans The Big Fix: Inside the S&L …
  • Land Scamming Bank Looting America All the Minerals Gas ……LOOTING TRILLIONS the Largest INSIDE JOB EVER BEWARE OF THE GANGSTER BANKSTERS …. The Continuing Friggin Story In Honor of Paul Friggins This Page is dedicated to the COUNTLESS Heroes that have been DRAINING THE SWAMP for many decades. The STAGGERING ROBBERIES must be STOPPED….. Swamp Fox FROM 1979 covering the 1976 Murder of …
  • Earth Looted By The Money Changers – The Missing … 29, 1999 · Earth Looted By The Money Changers  The Missing Quadrillions; … Texas KING of Bank Looting and Land Fraud. vimeo. Click to view. 14:47 HD. Quantitative Sleazing ( The Fed Reserve CABAL ) … THE S&L DEBACLE: Public policy lessons for bank and thrift regulation. Lawrence J. White. Oxford University Press, 1991.
  • Trillions Stolen …… Looting of a Nation | Smile! You’re at …https://americalooted.wordpress.comOct 03, 2005 · Nov 14, 2018 – The bank has been very aggressive in making loans to property … is in real estate, and half of that is in construction and land development, which …. At some point, the rich learned how to “hack” the system and loot the public.
  • FRAUD AND GREED PLAYED A PART IN THE S&L DEBACLE | …https:// AND GREED PLAYED A PART IN THE S&L DEBACLE … financial statements and “systematic looting and wasting the assets” of Vernon, which was named for a small Texas … 
  • The Savings and Loan Debacle Twenty-Five Years Later: A ……It was riveting reading and to the untrained eye, PF&M seemed to have built an airtight case that the S&L debacle was simply the result of massive fraud facilitated by deregulation. After PF&M’s Inside Job came Martin Mayer’s The Greatest-Ever Bank Robbery: The Collapse of the Savings and Loan Industry (1990).
  • FBI Will Probe Thousands of Fraud Claims at Area S&, Banks …https:// can involve any number of crimes. It can include outright looting of deposits, inflated appraisals, swapping loans between thrifts to make one look sounder than it is, “straw buyers … 
  • Mispression of felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job 29, 2004 · Mispression of Felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job Fri Oct 29, 2004 10:59 If you are correct, and I have seen bigger surprises, then Mr. Kerry Must Be Delt with as well. Here is a letter I wrote this morning to a friend in the Real Estate Business. 
  • [CTRL] =?ISO-8859-1?Q?”FBI=3FJustice=20Dept.=20COVER=20UP … fact is very simple, the FBI from Houston to Washington is COVERING UP Massive and very widespread LAND/Bank/Consumer/Criminal FRAUD in Texas. They also Covered up the Arson Fire at the general Air Services terminal at the Conroe, Texas airport. … the S&L Looting Page and the Massive Colonias LAND FRAUD debacle that has been rampant in … 
  • The LAND SCAMMING of TRUMP and His Pals …. AMERICA ……Looting and Laundering TRILLIONS Clintonista Bush Mafia Donald Trump’s and Barry Dunham’s MULTI BILLION Dollar Undoing the 70s 80s and 90s WERE CHUMP CHANGE; MAFIA DON’s Financiers Deutsche Bank and “The” COMPANY … Bushs Obamas … 
  • Geithner Channels Greenspan and Airbrushes Fraud out of …;May 02, 2012 · Geithner Channels Greenspan and Airbrushes Fraud out of Crisis. Wed, May 2, 2012 – 8:49am … “Of the more than 3,000 pending bank fraud and embezzlement cases with losses in excess of $100,000, 451 are in Texas, he said. … Geithner or his staff could have learned about the role of fraudin the S&L debacle by reading the transcript of the … 
  • The Greatest American Shambles | by Michael M. Thomas … We have here, in round figures, 2,200 pages devoted to what is unarguably the greatest financial shambles (or, as the authors of these books and articles with justice variously prefer, “robbery,” “debacle,” “looting,” “scam,” “crisis,” “scandal”) in American history, and we can be certain that at least that number of pages again is either […] 
  • Quixotic Joust: Land and Loot: A How-To on Money … 01, 2011 · Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering – Part 3 … General Homes* was a large publicly traded land development company operating in Houston, which had an option to buy the Texas land mentioned in the previous segments. … to Mike Driscoll in the hope of protecting himself from future federal prosecutorial misconduct in a guilty plea to … 
  • Savings and loan crisis – Wikipedia savings and loan crisis of the 1980s and 1990s (commonly dubbed the S&L crisis) was the failure of 1,043 out of the 3,234 savings and loan associations in the United States from 1986 to 1995: the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation (FSLIC) closed or otherwise resolved 296 institutions from 1986 to 1989 and the Resolution Trust … 
  • [PDF]The Savings and Loan Debacle, Financial Crime, and the State;THE SAVINGS AND LOAN DEBACLE, FINANCIAL CRIME, AND THE STATE … (S&L) crisis of the 1980s was one of the worst financial … DC, and in field offices in California, Texas… 
  • The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One How Corporate … uses the latest advances in criminology and economics to develop a theory of why “control fraud”—looting a company for personal profit—tends to occur in waves that make financial markets deeply inefficient. He also explains how to prevent such waves. … Control Fraud in the S&L Industry; … The University of Texas Press is a … 
  • Best Way To Rob A Bank Is To Own One: William K. Black … Way To Rob A Bank Is To Own One by William K. Black available in Trade Paperback on, also read synopsis and reviews. Persons interested in the economics of fraud, the S& L debacle, the problems of financial… 
  • Home [] FBI declined to say how many agents are investigating S&L and bank fraud. 11/01/1992 … it’s hard to imagine real reform occurring. But this time, unlike in the S&L debacle, the crisis so severe that it is hammering the stock markets, causing the dollar to fall and threatening the entire economic recovery. … 530&ei=C6L8Wpr6GMTW5gLa57bABA …CROOKED DEVELOPERS & BANKING COLLAPSE – Voy Federal Home Loan Bank began examining Vernon in summer 1985. In April 1986 it barred the S&Lfrom renewing customer loans, almost all of which Dixon said were about to be renewed. “I’m not a guy who flew into town to rape the savings and loan business,” Dixon said.A Well Financed Orgy The Looted TRILLIONS on Vimeo you know? If you have a question about Vimeo, chances are we’ve already answered it in our FAQ. Take a look-see.Mispression of felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job 29, 2004 · Judson Witham Mispression of Felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job Fri Oct 29, 2004 10:59 If you are correct, and I have seen bigger surprises, then Mr. Kerry Must Be Delt with as well. Here is a letter I wrote this morning to a friend in the Real Estate Business.
  • FRAUD AND GREED PLAYED A PART IN THE S&L DEBACLEBy Scott McCartney, Associated Press writerPublished: August 21, 1988 12:00 am Don R. Dixon had all the trappings of success: a California beach house, trips to European spas, $5 million in art, Rolls Royces and $110 perfume bottles for his wife.He traveled on corporate jets, relaxed on a corporate yacht, entertained politicians. Dixon’s salary and benefits ran in the millions.Federal officials say that the “indulgent and opulent lifestyle,” right down to the perfume, was financed by the savings bank Dixon owned, Vernon Savings and Loan.Ultimately, however, the U.S. government paid. Vernon S&L was declared hopelessly insolvent and was closed. It cost the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp. more than $1.3 billion to pay off Vernon’s depositors – making it one of the biggest bailouts in U.S. history and about the same size as the Chrysler Corp. rescue.Dixon faces a civil suit accusing him of falsifying financial statements and “systematic looting and wasting the assets” of Vernon, which was named for a small Texas town. He’s moved to California, filed for personal bankruptcy protection, denied the accusations in court but declined to answer questions before regulators.Two former Vernon vice presidents and a former president have pleaded guilty to various bank fraud charges and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. One has even admitted hiring prostitutes for a board meeting. Dixon, authorities say, is a top target of the most extensive white-collar criminal investigation in Justice Department history.And Dixon is something more: an example of the roots of the U.S. savings and loan crisis.While the S&L catastrophe has been triggered by the downfall of the Southwest economy, it has been exaggerated by the high-flying antics of “entrepreneurs” in Texas, California and other states who, either through fraud, mismanagement or bad decisions, created billion-dollar messes.“For some few unscrupulous individuals, it was simply an accepted way of doing business,” said Marvin Collins, the U.S. attorney for north Texas. “That small percentage had a tremendous impact.”About one-sixth of the nation’s 3,000 S&Ls were insolvent at the end of 1987. They stretched from Alaska to Florida; Texas had 128. Most were well-managed institutions that fell on hard times, regulators say. But as Congress tries to save the industry credited with financing the American dream of home ownership, it has become increasingly clear that the S&L story is not simply one of an economic downturn.Without the fraud, “you don’t have the problem you have today,” said M. Danny Wall, chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and the nation’s chief S&L regulator. “There are others besides Vernon that will prove to have been fraudulent.”And there’s more. Regulators themselves have been called on the carpet by congressional committees and others for failing to watch over the industry.The federal regulatory staff in California fell from 200 to 40 in the early 1980s. The Southwest office lost most of its staff when it moved from Little Rock, Ark., to Dallas. Some Texas S&Ls didn’t have audits for three years. Questions were raised about Vernon in 1983, but nothing was done because of insufficient staff, regulators say.Texas regulators were also stranded when the state Legislature redirected fees from savings and loans to help balance the general budget, a governor’s task force found.“There was no one looking after the shop,” said banking analyst Frank Anderson of D. Latin & Co. “The people in Washington, before Danny Wall came (in 1987), had no clue.”S&L executives, including Tom Wageman, chairman of Sunbelt Savings in Dallas, blame a series of rules changes for causing havoc and opening the dirty dealings door.Even the cleanup has been troubled.-For months after the problems were discovered, losses for the industry continued at the rate of $1 million an hour because the FSLIC didn’t have enough money to close down the insolvent thrifts.-Healthy institutions must pay special assessments to cover the losses – a policy one leading S&L banker has dubbed “vampire economics.”-Wall’s “Southwest Plan” was scheduled to sell or close at least two insolvent S&Ls a week, but in its first six months handled only a handful.-Some in Congress have complained the bank board has been handing out the few billions it does have without proper debate.“It is incomprehensible to me that a sense of crisis has yet to develop around this issue,” said Rep. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., a House Banking Committee member.And not everyone is convinced the questionable practices have ended.“I originally predicted that the bulk of this ctivity was historical,” said Collins, the federal prosecutor. “Unfortunately, I think there is still some of it going on.”Created after the Great Depression, the savings and loan industry provided a simple service: locals deposited their paychecks in government-insured accounts and the bank lent it back in home mortgages.Vernon S&L was a small-town thrift doing that small-town business 10 miles below the Oklahoma border. There was hardly a safer, more plain-vanilla business.In the late 1970s, high interest rates sapped the profitability out of S&Ls, though. Congress deregulated the industry, loosening the restraints on what rates S&Ls could pay depositors and opening up new money-making services.Dixon bought Vernon in 1982, moved its headquarters to Dallas and offered high rates that attracted depositors from across the country. The deposits were guaranteed by the FSLIC up to $100,000, and millions of dollars flew in. Vernon grew a staggering 1600 percent in less than four years – even though S&Ls are prohibited from growing more than 25 percent per year.With all those deposits, Vernon went on a lending binge. New rules allowed S&Ls into commercial developments. The changes also allowed loans on projects with little capital behind them and no down payments. Qualifying for loans was a snap if you knew the right people and were willing to pay Vernon’s heftier fees.“The officers of Vernon conducted the real estate lending function of Vernon in a way calculated to create as much loan-fee income as possible, without particular regard to use of sound lending practices,” former Vernon chief lending officer Jim Wright said in an affidavit.New rules also allowed Vernon and other S&Ls to become a partner in deals by making direct investments – a risky venture.“Direct investment is heads, they win; tails, the FSLIC loses,” said FHLBB member Roger Martin.The FSLIC, of course, usually lost.At the high-flying S&Ls, there were tales of developers lining up in bank lobbies to “do deals.” Ed McBirney, then chairman of Sunbelt Savings, which was known as “Gun-belt Savings,” conducted business at a local restaurant.Western Savings Association grew 5700 percent under its chairman, Jarrett Woods, who, federal regulators say, took $3 million in salary and bonuses while his S&L plunged into the red.As the frenzied lending continued and depositors’ interest earnings had to be paid, bank executives raised the interest rates offered even higher so more money would come in, and dove into even riskier ventures hoping for a big payoff.The cycle has been likened to a pyramid scheme, backed by the insurance of the government.“Many of these high fliers used their S&Ls as private piggy banks,” the General Accounting Office reported.Officials also charge that S&L executives fudged their required fil-ings with regulators to make thrifts look healthier. At the end of 1986, Vernon reported a positive net worth of $17 million, but regulators say it actually was negative $350 million. Ninety-six percent of its loans were overdue.The FHLBB estimates the cost of cleaning up Texas is $15 billion. The national total grows about $1 billion a month, according to government projections. Paying off depositors will cost twice what the Reagan administration has spent on “Star Wars,” officials say, at least $40 billion and perhaps $100 billion.An FBI task force, which now occupies an entire floor of a federal building here, has subpoenaed rec-ords from 290 individuals. So far, 17 S&L officials have been charged; Collins expects more indictments this fall.“When you commit armed robbery at a bank, alarms go off, the police come and sometimes there’s a chase,” Collins said.“When you commit bank fraud, nothing happens. There’s not much of immediate consequence.INSIDE JOB
    The Looting of Americans
    Savings and Loans
    By Stephen Pizzo,
    Mary Fricker
    and Paul MuoloCHAPTER EIGHTEENThe Last Squeezing of the GrapesDon Dixon had stepped down at Vernon after the FHLB issued its cease and desist order. He no longer participated in the thrift’s day-to-day activities, but he still controlled Vernon’s subsidiary Dondi Financial. Though gone from the office, his presence continued to be felt in the vault. After clearing out at Vernon, Don Dixon began to cash in his Southern California empire. Since Vernon Savings would no longer be paying the bills, something certainly had to be done with all his homes there: the Solano Beach house, the Del Mar house, and the Rancho Santa Fe home that he was building. He tried to find someone to buy the Solano Beach house (the only one of the three that Vernon Savings was not on the hook for). Jack Atkinson, who regulators said borrowed (with his affiliates) over $56.2 million from Vernon, told an FHLB examiner he paid the Solano Beach rent for a while. So did John Riddle, a developer who bank records showed had borrowed about $10 million from Vernon.Our old friend Charles Bazarian showed up next, renting the home for several months during 1986. Bazarian actually made two offers to buy the home from its owners after Dixon stopped making the monthly payments. In March, Bazarian offered $1.75 million, and he said Paris Savings and Loan (in North Dallas around the corner from Vernon Savings) had agreed to finance the purchase. However, Dixon’s man Friday in California said Dixon told him the Bazarian offer was bogus, intended simply to buy time for Dixon.1Bazarian’s heart attack that year sent Dixon scrambling for another “buyer,” but Bazarian came back in September with another offer, $1.45 million. Paris Savings backed out of the deal, however, when they read in the National Thrift news that Bazarian had been indicted in September for the Florida Center Bank scam with Renda and Rapp. Eventually Dixon lost the home.As for the Del Mar house, in June 1986 Dixon negotiated its sale to a company owned by Bruce West, another major Vernon borrower. An FSLIC lawsuit revealed tiiat Dixon arranged to have Vernon loan West $2.8 million to buy the house, but first Dixon removed the expensive artwork, for which Vernon had paid $900,000.2 After the sale of the Del Mar house the Dixons continued to occupy it for about six months, paying West’s company, Lawton Industries, $7,100 a month rent. During that time the Dixons abandoned hope of moving into the Rancho Santa Fe mansion, under construction a few miles away, and in December 1986 the Dixons moved into a home in nearby Laguna Beach that was owned by Jack Franks, a California loan broker who would later be indicted with Tom Nevis at State/Corvallis.In July Dixon held an auction at Symbolic Motors in La Jolla and sold 19 vintage cars. Eight of them belonged to him, he said, including a classic HispanoSuiza, a stunning 1910 Duesenberg, and a 1936 Mercedes. Regulators said the auction grossed $2.3 million, of which Dixon pocketed $1.8 million. Symbolic Motors paid all the auction fees, and it (and, therefore, Vernon Savings) lost $204,000 on the auction.After Dixon withdrew from Vernon Savings, some of his loyal cadre must have known their days were numbered. In August 1986 they made some strategic moves for what they apparently hoped would be a clean getaway. Their bonus and “bean” commissions, over a million dollars of which was being held in bonus accounts at Vernon Savings, would be forfeited if they quit (or if the thrift were seized). So, the FSLIC charged, they took out personal loans in the exact amounts contained in their bonus accounts and never made a single payment on the loans. In effect, they withdrew the money from their bonus accounts by defaulting on the loans. Attorneys for the FSLIC would later tell a federal judge of their amazement at the boldness displayed by the Vernon executives:But even as it became increasingly difficult to continue the cover-up and as the investigator’s net began to tighten, the Senior Officers schemed one last desperate maneuver to divert another $1,211,792 into their own pockets. . . .The persistence and boldness of the Senior Officers in putting this last scheme into effect, after the commencement of a special investigation by the FHLB, is truly breath-taking.Appearing later for depositions, in response to the attorney’s charges, all of the senior officers refused to answer questions. (By press time, three had been indicted on bank fraud charges, two of whom had pleaded guilty.)By December 1986, the dozens of examiners sniffing around in Vernon’s books began to piece together a frightening picture. What emerged was a $1.7 billion financial institution in worse shape than the Alamo after the smoke cleared. Dead and dying properties and loans littered Vernon’s portfolio. Vernon assets—office buildings, shopping centers, condo projects—hemorrhaged before their eyes. At the same time new casualties staggered in the door every time the examiners glanced up. Losses mounted by the hour. Regulators started calling the thrift “Vermin Savings.” Roy Green, president of the Dallas FHLB, told congressional investigators that Vernon was the worst-run, worst-managed debacle he’d ever seen in the thrift industry.Vernon Savings had reported a $17 million negative net worth in November 1986. A month later, as examiners got a better handle on the situation, that figure rose to $350 million. Then regulators discovered that Vernon had sold more than $449 million in loans to other thrifts, to get the loans off of Vernon’s books, and had promised to buy many of the loans back if the borrowers ever defaulted. That meant Vernon was still on the hook for those loans, but if Vernon were ever liquidated by the FSLIC and unable to uphold its end of the participation agreements, thrifts around the country would take direct losses every time one of the loans they had bought from Vernon turned sour. The health of a number of S&Ls around the country depended upon Vernon’s survival.In December 1986 regulators decided to seek a consent-to-merger agreement from Vernon.4 The agreement would impose certain restrictions on management and authorize the FSLIC to arrange a merger or sale of the thrift. It also would give regulators the right to replace Vernon’s directors and officers.Dixon saw control of Vernon Savings slipping away from him, and he didn’t intend to give up his thrift without a fight. He tried to contact Representative Jim Wright.5 When Wright didn’t return his call, he got in touch with Representative Tony Coelho and Coelho called Wright’s right-hand man John Paul Mack,6 who got Wright to call Dixon.7 Wright later told congressional investigators that Dixon said, “Look, they are getting ready to put me . . . and all the stockholders completely out of business. … If I can be given a week, I have located a source of income, a source of loans, financing in Louisiana . . . a person who will take over all the nonperforming notes and provide capital to continue and redo our operation here, if they will just give me that time.” Dixon asked Wright to intercede for him with Gray, and near Christmas 1986 Wright called Gray at home in California.According to Wright, he said, “Ed. I don’t know anything about Vernon Savings and Loan. I don’t know if it’s valid or not. I don’t know if it’s meritorious. But the man claims he’s being kicked out of business. He’s got a week or three or four days that he can save it and avoid foreclosure. Why don’t you look into it?”Gray told Wright he thought there must be a misunderstanding. Only the Bank Board could authorize closing an institution and no such authorization had been given. He agreed to find out what was going on.Later Gray would lament over the Christmas call: “I have done things as a results of his [Wright’s] calls that I would not have done and never did before.”But Gray kept his promise and called Roy Green at the FHLB in Dallas. Green said regulators planned to seek a consent-to-merger agreement, not a closing, and Gray and Green called Mack to explain the difference. They told Mack a consent-to-merger agreement wouldn’t affect the Louisiana business- man’s ability to invest in Vernon, and Gray said if there was an investor foolish enough to commit $300 million to a massively insolvent institution, the Bank Board would certainly be interested.On January 2 the Dallas FHLB received four proposals to invest in Vernon and rejected them all. In the case of the Louisiana group, it proposed to put up no cash whatsoever.Jim Wright was elevated to the post of speaker of the House of Representatives, the third most powerful post in government, in January 1987. Gray’s recap bill then was truly in the hands of a powerful hostile force. Roy Green and Joe Selby decided to take a crack at Wright next. They knew better than anyone else what was yet to come in Texas, and they felt Wright had to be made to understand that their examiners were only doing what needed to be done. The examiners were not victimizing innocent constituents. Until Wright understood the situation they felt he would continue to punish the Bank Board by failing to support the critically needed recap bill. “I wanted the speaker to understand exactly what was going on in Texas,” Green said. Selby wasn’t so sure the meeting would do any good. Some thought Wright’s actions grew more out of self-interest than out of ignorance of the facts. But Selby reluctantly agreed to accompany Green.Ed Gray said he was not invited to attend the February 10 meeting because Wright didn’t want him there. The six who did go included Green, Selby, and William Black, who was the FSLIC’s aggressive young deputy director. Wright invited his Texas developer friend and partner George Mallick, George’s son Michael, and others to observe the meeting. Wright had asked Mallick to write a report on the cost of cleaning up all the insolvent S&Ls and the reasons for the problems, and Mallick was presenting his completed report today.8 Black later told us he and the other regulators were astounded to see the Mallicks and the others in the room. He said their presence made it virtually impossible to discuss highly confidential regulatory matters openly with Wright.Wright trusted Mallick’s views. He and Mallick had been partners since the 1970’s, according to published accounts, and Wright’s wife, Betty, received $18,000 a year as an employee of a firm they jointly owned. A Justice Department official told the Washington Times the relationship between Wright and the Mallicks appeared to be “a classic gratuities case . . . official acts prompted by financial favors,” and it later became one focus of an ethics probe of the speaker.The February 1987 meeting in the speaker’s office began with Roy Green and Joe Selby explaining the serious problems they faced in Texas. Green told Wright that the innuendos about gestapo tactics in Texas were nonsense. Regulators were just doing their jobs.Wright was unmoved. If they were so smart, Wright wanted to know, why couldn’t the FSLIC handle these problems more creatively? He felt the FSLIC was forcing thrifts into insolvency by requiring them to take huge write-downs on property they owned.“Why can’t you guys work out some kind of deals with these people?”Wright wanted to know.There’s disagreement on just who brought up Vernon at the meeting. Wright claimed he didn’t. Black said he most certainly did, others said Green did. One thing was clear—Wright was furious with Gray, whom he felt had lied to him about Vernon.“When I talk to the head of a federal agency and he tells me something, you know, I believe him,” Black quoted Wright as saying. “And I asked Gray when they were going to shut down Vernon Savings and Loan and he personally assured me that they were not going to do that, and then I discover that you did just exactly that, and the very same day.”Black realized that the speaker just didn’t understand the difference between a consent-to-merger agreement and a seizure. Black was an articulate, liberal Democrat in his late thirties. A striking man, with a full head of red hair and a red beard, he was well versed on the FSLIC’s growing crisis. Unlike Gray, there was nothing folksy about Black. He was professional and blunt.“You don’t seem to understand what’s going on down there,” Black said to the speaker.“I don’t understand what’s going on down there? ” Wright boomed, his face turning bright red. “I’m the speaker of the House, goddamn it. Goddamn it, I listened to you people and now you’re going to listen to me. You’re talking semantics to me, jargon, and I don’t like it.”9 [BFD,you were the crooked speaker of the crooked house,just another parasite POS. D.C]Wright complained bitterly that it was Ed Gray who didn’t know what he was doing, especially in Texas. Black, choosing his words more carefully this time, tried to explain to Wright that Vernon was hopelessly insolvent, that it would cost hundreds of millions of the FSLIC’s dollars—maybe as much as a billion —just to clean up after Don Dixon.Wright turned to Joe Selby.“You’re the guy who’s carrying the big hammer down there. They’re scared of you,” Wright said, cocking an angry eye at Selby. Selby wasn’t about to get into a shouting match with Wright, so he just didn’t reply. (Friends later said Selby told them he was afraid of the speaker.) The meeting lasted about an hour, but Wright remained unmoved and nothing was accomplished. Two weeks after the meeting, Roy Green threw in the towel and resigned from the Dallas Bank Board. He later denied that his resignation had anything to do with his meeting with Wright.The meeting with Green and Selby was good background for Wright for what happened six weeks later. On March 27, 1987, the inevitable could be delayed no longer and the FHLBB ordered that Vernon Savings be closed. When the extent of the damage at Vernon began to leak out in the press, the seizure became a major embarrassment to the speaker. His press secretary quickly issued a statement:“The Speaker has no personal knowledge one way or other of this or any other individual savings and loan. . . . The Speaker’s aim from the beginning has been to make sure that depositors are protected and that sound and salvageable private businesses are not forced into bankruptcy or foreclosure whenever that can be avoided.” A full-fledged damage-control operation swung into action to protect the new speaker from himself. Representative Frank Annunzio (D-III)10 rushed to Wright’s side and told the Washington Post, “If this [the closing of Vernon] is an attempt to embarrass Jim Wright then Mr. Gray is lucky that the Speaker is an advocate for the homeless because after June, when Mr. Gray is out of a job (Gray’s term as FHLBB chairman was due to expire in June 1987) he may be sleeping on a grate.” [Typical jackass talking out his ass,about things he was clueless about DC]Regulators went on the offensive. They seized thrift after thrift in Texas in the months that followed the closure of Vernon. But it wasn’t the end, not by a long shot. They began the task of dismantling the rogue thrifts one piece at a time, dissecting them, like a mortician would dissect a cadaver to determine the cause of death, reading out the list of maladies and malignancies as they were found. In Vernon’s case the list was a long one, just part of which was a long list of loans FSLIC compiled that were in default at the time of the takeover. For us some of the names were familiar ones: John Atkinson and related companies, $56.2 million; Dixon-related companies,$44.9 million; Larry Vineyard, $16.3 million; John B. Anderson, $11.7 million; John Riddle, $9.7 million; Tom Gaubert, $6.76 million; Bruce West, $4.85 million; Charles Bazarian and related companies, $4.6 million; Frank Domingues, $995,000; Durward Curlee, $502,600; Jack Franks and related entities, $300,000; Tom Nevis, amount unspecified.In a case where staggering figures and tall tales were the order of the day, it was hard to pick one figure that summed up Vernon, but if we had to choose one it would be this; By the time Vernon failed on March 20, 1987, an unbelievable 96 percent of all its outstanding loans were in default. 96 percent! Virtually every loan Vernon had made was a bad loan.11On April 27, 1987, the FSLIC filed a civil racketeering lawsuit against Dixon, Dondi Financial, and a baker’s dozen of Vernon former officers, charging that they had looted Vernon of more than $540 million. The suit alleged, among other things, that they had made loans of up to $90 million each to friends and business associates without, the suit said, any “reasonable basis for concluding the loans were collectible.” At the time the civil suit was the largest in the FSLIC’s history. Then regulators faced the long and messy job of trying to clean up the books, repay depositors, and dispose of Vernon’s over encumbered real estate in a Texas market that had gone bust. Cleaning up Vernon would ultimately cost $1.3 billion. Later Vernon CEO Woody F. Lemons was indicted for bank fraud and two of the six senior officers named in the FSLIC suit pleaded guilty to bank fraud. Spokesmen said the investigation was continuing.The day after the FSLIC sued Dixon, et al, Speaker Wright and the House Banking Committee Chairman St Germain did a public about-face and. in what The New York Times characterized as “a startling reversal,” agreed to support the $15 billion recap bill. Wright later said his sudden decision had nothing to do with Vernon Savings. He said Secretary of the Treasury James Baker had met him in Fort Worth on April 24 and personally asked him to support the $15 billion bill. [What a lying sack of shit DC]While the FSLIC was filing its half-billion-dollar lawsuit, Dixonwas going into his lame-bird routine and declaring bankruptcy. He claimed to have lost $100 million and to be fiat broke, and he warned creditors that they “couldn’t get blood out of a turnip. “He estimated his income in 1987 would be a modest $104,500, compared to $1.9 million in 1986 and $2.9 million in 1985. Dixon appeared at a bankruptcy court hearing in June 1987 in Southern California with Dana clinging nervously to his arm. When the judge questioned him about the extravagant life-style he had led while he controlled Vernon Savings, Dixon tried to paint a picture of prudence. He left spectators shaking their heads when he insisted that his Ferrari was not an extravagance.“It was a family Ferrari,” he told the court. How so? Well, he explained, because it had an automatic transmission. Laughter spread throughout the court- room. As Dixon answered the bankruptcy court judge’s questions, he glanced out into the audience, where he spotted a familiar face, Dallas reporter Byron Harris, who had closely covered Dixon’s rise and fall. Dixon smirked, as if to say “What a pain in the ass, huh?” Dana, on the other hand, looked terrified by the whole public spectacle. She held tightly to Don’s arm as they sat at the witness table and afterward in the hall as they passed the phalanx of reporters and television cameras.The “family” Ferrari was not the only asset Dixon’s 85 creditors wanted to get their hands on. There were the custom-made shotguns, now valued at $25,000 apiece, and Dana’s $75,000 diamond solitaire ring. And the $31,000 worth of French wines Dixon had picked up on his European tours. All were listed in the bankruptcy filings.In an attempt to gauge the depth and breadth of Dixon’s five-year spending binge, his own attorney compiled a list of about 400 people and 150 banks and S&Ls Dixon had done business with (“every one he’d ever driven by,” quipped an associate) who might need to be notified about any action taken in his bankruptcy case. On the list were many names familiar to us: Larry Vineyard, Tyrell Barker, Jack Atkinson, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury John Connally, Ben Barnes (former lieutenant governor of Texas), Robert Ferrante, Jack Franks, John Riddle, Bruce West, Charles Bazarian and his company, CB Financial. There were also several familiar savings and loans; Sunbelt, Key, Paris, and Vernon.And there on the list was R. B. Tanner, 71, founder of Vernon Savings. Dixon continued to promise Tanner he would pay him the more than $2 million that Dixon still owed him for Vernon Savings and that the Tanners had counted on for their retirement, but it was hard to see where the money would come from.“We are hurting terrifically,” Mrs. Tanner told us, and R.B.’s health hadn’t been the same since Vernon’s collapse. But they found strength through doing mission work for their church.”R.B. lived a life of integrity,” Mrs. Tanner said proudly, and that was something, at least, that Don Dixon could not take from them. Months later the Tanners were on television, praying for Don Dixon’s soul.Bad as things were, Vernon wasn’t an exception in Dallas, it was the rule. FBI officials scoffed at Federal Home Loan Bank Board statements that the losses were attributable to the oil recession. Vernon, for example, was already in trouble in 1983, over two years before oil prices collapsed. Government auditors and Justice Department investigators estimated that there were $15 billion in losses in institutions in the Dallas area that were under criminal investigation. In Houston half the failed institutions there were under investigation as well. Every time investigators looked at a failed thrift, they found fraud.“My god,” an overwhelmed FBI agent said to us, “the only thing that is ever going to get me out of here is the statute of limitations.”(The statute of limitations for bank fraud is five years.)“This is the biggest Keystone Cops debacle to happen to U.S. financial institutions since the Great Depression,” one veteran thrift executive, hired by the FSLIC to help untangle the mess, told The Wall Street Journal. “The failure on the regulatory side is every bit equal to the failures committed by the other side.”“If you know the Vernon story,” a FSLIC attorney told us, “you know three percent of what happened in Texas. “HUGE FRAUD PROBEOF DALLAS THRIFTSThus read newspaper headlines across the United States in mid-August 1987. The U.S. Department of Justice had convened a special task force of 20 FBI agents, two assistant U.S. attorneys, four IRS agents, 14 Justice Department lawyers and special prosecutors, and at least one federal grand jury. They seized the records of about 400 players in the Dallas S&L game, involved in 25 to 35 thrifts, and they announced that the largest white-collar crime probe of its type in U.S. history was under way. Their investigation, they said, could take from two to five years to complete.The Dallas Times Herald obtained a copy of the list of 400 people whose records had been seized while investigators repeatedly stressed that seizure of a person’s records did not indicate that person himself was under investigation. On the list were many names familiar to us: Jack Atkinson, Tyrell Barker, Herman Beebe, Mitchell Brown, Durward Curlee, Don and Dana Dixon, Jack Franks, Tom Gaubert, Craig Hall, Morton Hopkins, Ed McBirney, Tom Nevis, John Riddle, Larry Vineyard, Jarrett Woods. The list also included some heavyweight Texans, including Richard Strauss, the son of Robert Strauss, the former national Democratic Party chairman; Ben Barnes; John Connally; former Texas Savings and Loan Commissioner L. Linton Bowman, III; and Gene Philips, president of Southmark, a $10 billion Dallas-based investment company. An eerie silence fell over what had been a mecca for wild, free-wheeling S&L action.Many suspected the task force investigation was no more than a temporary inconvenience for Texans. As Molly Ivins,columnist for the Dallas Times Herald, once said, “When they crap out, Texans are very good natured about it and just start over with something else. It’s the game they like …”Texas differed only in scale from what we had discovered virtually everywhere else in the country, even in places where the only oil being pumped was at the corner gas station. Texas had attracted almost every swindler in the country who was traveling the thrift circuit because Texas thrifts wheeled and dealed like no others in the nation. Texas, we had discovered, was the most glaring example of how ultraliberal state thrift regulations, coupled with new federal powers and FSLIC deposit insurance, produced a machine that sucked in deposits from across the nation and channeled them into a network of excess, fraud, and corruption the likes of which had no equal in the history of this nation.CHAPTER NINETEENThe GodfatherWe had spent several months investigating the Texas savings and loan industry when a source slipped us a startling document. It was a copy of a series of secret reports prepared in 1985 for the comptroller of the currency.1 The report had been ordered by the comptroller in order to “determine the breadth of Herman Beebe’s influence or control over financial institutions.” We knew of Beebe’s involvement in banking through his credit life insurance business. We also knew he had bankrolled Dixon and Barker when they bought Vernon and State/ Lubbock and he had loaned money to McBirney to buy an airplane for Sunbelt Savings. But Beebe’s interest in financial institutions apparently went far deeper than that.The 22-page report listed over 100 banks and savings and loans that the comptroller’s investigators suspected were either directly or indirectly controlled by Beebe or over whom he had some kind of influence. Listed among the thrifts they suspected Beebe of controlling were, of course, Vernon and State/Lubbock. The report also outlined a complex structure of personal relationships, corporate shells, and stock partnerships that secretly underlaid ownership of dozens more institutions throughout Texas, Louisiana, Colorado, California, Mississippi, Ohio, and Oklahoma. And beneath it all, the report alleged. was the guiding hand of Herman K. Beebe. When we scanned the list of thrifts and banks, we saw many that we knew had failed or were on the verge of insolvency. Suddenly Herman Beebe appeared to be in the class of Mario Renda and Charles Bazarian. If the report was correct, Herman Beebe was a veritable godfather of thrifts and banks.2Herman Beebe in 1987 was 60 years old. For over 20 years he had been quietly manipulating financial institutions for his own benefit and the benefit of a close-knit circle of influential friends. We learned that Beebe was a business associate of the most powerful men in Louisiana and Texas, and we heard the rumors that he was also associated with one of the Mafia’s most powerful godfathers, Carlos Marcello.His influence in banking circles was so pervasive by the mid-1980s that he could be connected in some way to almost every dying bank or savings and loan in Texas and Louisiana, yet few people had ever heard his name—that is until U.S. Attorney Joe Cage set out to change all that. The confrontation between Joe Cage and Herman Beebe was a clash played out in Louisiana courtrooms between 1985 and 1988. It would match in significance Mike Manning’s pursuit of Mario Renda.Herman Beebe grew up in Rapides Parish in central Louisiana. Beebe was a common name in the Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas area, and Herman came from solid rural stock. In 1943 he entered Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, just a few miles from home, and swept the floors of Caldwell Hall for his room and board. But World War II intervened, and he had to give up school for Navy shipboard duty in the Pacific. After the war he finished college at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, and the same year, 1949, he married Mary. They would have four children: Easter Bunny, Pamela, Ruth Anastasia, and Herman, Jr. Beebe had majored in agricultural education, and he worked as an assistant county agent in northern Louisiana until called into the Navy reserves during the Korean War. While in the Navy he decided to sell insurance when he got out.In 1956 he moved back to Rapides Parish and within two years he was vice president of Savings Life Insurance Company in Alexandria (eventually one of the largest mortgage life insurance companies in Louisiana). In 1961 he started his own company, investing in motels, mostly Holiday Inns. He originally called his company American Motel Industries, but gradually his investments spread from motels to insurance to nursing homes and finally banking. American Motel Industries became simply AMI, Inc. Over the next 25 years he would build AMI into a multimillion-dollar conglomerate only to see it crumble as U.S. Attorney Joe Cage probed Beebe’s business dealings and bombarded him with indictments and back-to-back investigations.Whatever Horatio Alger elements there may have been in Beebe’s success story, investigators said he joined the dark side early. In January 1965 the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Beebe and a partner of withholding important information when they tried to sell AMI stock.3Beebe shrugged off the SEC judgment and went right back to building his empire. Nearly two years later, in October 1966, he made a decision that would change his life. It would also change the fortunes of more than 100 banks and thrifts over the next 20 years. In 1966 Herman Beebe bought his first bank, Bossier Bank & Trust, in Bossier City, Louisiana. As AMI had become the cornerstone of his business empire, so Bossier Bank & Trust would become the cornerstone of his banking empire. On a roll, he parlayed that purchase into eight more banks in Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas. Beebe had come up with a way to create his own captive customer base for his insurance company. By owning his own banks Beebe could require the banks’ prospective borrowers to buy ami’s credit life insurance. No insurance, no loan, though it might not be so crudely put.Beebe quickly became one of Louisiana’s major employers and a one-man conglomerate. Soon he was in demand. The mayor of Shreveport, Louisiana, 120 miles northwest of Alexandria, tirelessly wooed him, even attending AMI board meetings. He urged Beebe to consider the benefits of basing his company in Shreveport. Beebe agreed—after all. his bank. Bossier Bank & Trust, was in Bossier City, a suburb just across the Red River from Shreveport. In 1971 he made the move. For the next 14 years he would work and live in Shreveport, 200 miles due east of Dallas.Even as Beebe’s star was rising in Louisiana, he was getting some unasked for attention outside the state. Two thousand miles away, on the West Coast, the San Diego police were looking into Beebe’s growing contacts there and notified the Metropolitan Crime Commission in New Orleans. The San Diego authorities reported that they had discovered that Beebe was negotiating to purchase a casino. His partners in the deal were familiar to the San Diego police, who considered them undesirables.About the same time the rumors began to circulate that Beebe was “connected” in some way to Carlos Marcello, the powerful New Orleans Mafia boss. Among Beebe’s growing businesses were his nursing homes. Carlos Marcello liked nursing homes too. In fact, in 1966 he had been arrested in a New York restaurant with East Coast Mafia boss Carlo Gambino and Florida boss Santo Trafficante, and he had told authorities he was in New York to arrange financing for a nursing home. Aaron Kohn, who was on the Metropolitan Crime Commission at that time, said one of Marcello’s “messenger-boy attorneys” was seen serving as a courier between Marcello and Beebe in the mid-1970’s.4 Later Beebe’s attorney would tell us vehemently that Beebe absolutely did not have any association with Carlos Marcello or any organized crime figure.5Whatever relationships might have been developed underground. Beebe was forging powerful political connections above ground. In the early 1970’s he and former Texas Lieutenant Governor Ben Barnes developed a complex business association, the tentacles of which would be found 15 years later entwined in the Texas thrift crisis.When Ben Barnes was only 22 he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives. For 11 years he was one of Texas’s most up-and-coming young politicians. In 1968 he was nominated for lieutenant governor and became the first candidate in Texas history to receive two million votes. He was lieutenant governor from 1968 to 1972, but his political career ended after his name was involved in a bank and stock fraud scandal.In 1971 a group of Texas banks were looted by a network of businessmen who borrowed money from the banks and used it to buy and sell stock from firms that belonged to Texas businessman Frank Sharp.6 Ben Barnes had owned stock in one of the companies under investigation by the SEC, according to the Texas Observer, and he had had loans at Dallas Bank & Trust, owned by Sharp (Barnes and Beebe later bought the bank). Though Barnes was never indicted, the Texas media speculated that his involvement may have raised questions in the voters’ minds. He placed third in the 1972 race for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination.In July 1973 Beebe and Barnes began to form banking and insurance associations,7 and by mid-1976 they controlled or had major influence over 19 banks and savings and loans in Texas and Louisiana.Dallas, where Beebe’s Savings Life had an office, was the center of the pair’s business activity together. They often held their meetings in a North Dallas apartment, and it was sometime during 1976, Beebe later said, that Ben Barnes introduced Beebe to aggressive young Dallas developer Don Dixon.Financially, Beebe and Barnes did very well together. The Dallas Morning News reported that by 1976 Beebe claimed a net worth of $8.2 million, and Barnes’ prospects had certainly improved—from a net worth of $100,000 when he left the political arena in 1972 to $5.4 million in 1976. Unnoticed, they quietly went about the business of amassing a banking and insurance empire. Unnoticed, that was, until August 29, 1976, when Dallas Morning News reporters Earl Golz and Dave McNeely shattered the silence:PYRAMID SCHEME,UNSECURED LOANSPOSE THREAT TOSEVERAL STATE BANKSSo read the main headline on the Golz/McNeely series. The lead paragraph of their story could have run almost unchanged in any Dallas newspaper during the savings and loan crisis ten years later:“A multimillion dollar looting of state banks, with links to political figures and possibly to organized crime, could cause several state banks in Texas to fail unless severe corrective measures are taken, according to informed sources.”The gist of the stories was that a network of 14 businessmen had borrowed money to buy Texas banks and thrifts, used those banks and thrifts to get loans to buy others, and so on, in pyramid fashion. Then, once they had acquired the institutions, they had used depositors’ money to make loans to themselves and their friends.8 Among the men named in the story were Herman Beebe and Ben Barnes.Aside from the financial wheeling and dealing outlined in their Dallas Morning News series, Golz, and McNeely revealed disturbing information about some of the men in the network they said officials believed were looting state banks.9 Beebe, they said, had “drawn the interest of several federal investigative agencies, which have reported that he has had associations with individuals who have organized crime connections.”Again the allegation: “One agency has reported that Beebe has had frequent contact with one of the personal attorneys of reputed New Orleans Mafia boss Carlos Marcello.” And;“Usually reliable federal sources report that Bossier Bank & Trust is suspected of being a conduit for funds skimmed by organized crime from Las Vegas gambling receipts and placed in foreign bank numbered accounts.”Two of the men named in the Morning News series, Carroll Kelly and David Wylie, would later get financing from Beebe to take over Continental Savings and Loan in Houston, according to court documents. A Houston dentist (who was a former investor in two thrifts merged to form Continental) said in an affidavit that one of the men’s former partners told him New Orleans Mafia boss Carlos Marcello controlled Continental Savings through Beebe.10 Officials with Continental Savings denied the institution had anything to do with anybody in organized crime. (Continental Savings failed in October 1988.)Ben Barnes was in Reno, Nevada, negotiating to build a Holiday Inn at Lake Tahoe, when the 1976 Dallas Morning Newsseries began. He was livid. and with great fanfare and bluster(“I am sick and fired of having my personal business affairs subjected to continuous harassment. My family and I have endured enough persecution from the awesome power of a giant newspaper”) he sued the Morning News for $20 million.Within a few days Beebe followed with a $12 million suit. But for all their threats, the cases never came to court. After a lot of jawboning attorneys for the defense said Barnes and Beebe abandoned their monetary demands in return for the newspaper’s promise that it would not release any of the information it had collected on them and would seal the files. Barnes told us he did not pursue his suit because he could not show he had been damaged financially by the story.But that was by no means the end of the story. A House subcommittee,11 chaired by Representative Fernand St Germain (D-R.I.), held hearings in San Antonio later that year (1976) to investigate the closing of Citizens State Bank in Carrizo Springs and what became known as the rent-a-bank scandal. The hearings dragged up all the dirt again and added more.12 A former executive vice president of Citizens State Bank testified at the hearing that an associate had attended a meeting with Beebe and Harper and later told him “that Beebe was supposedly connected with the Mafia. ” Beebe denied the rumor.In the documents filed as part of the 1976 congressional hearings was a letter from loan broker Donald E. Luna to Barnes and Beebe about a loan Luna was arranging for an associate of theirs. We remembered Don Luna: Ten years after he wrote this letter to Barnes and Beebe, he would be indicted with Cardaseia at Flushing Federal for allegedly extorting $1.75 million from a Swiss developer. (Sometime during those ten years, federal authorities said, Luna had been convicted of running a confidence scam.) Cardaseia was cleared of the charge and Luna was awaiting trial as this book went to press.As with the congressional hearings on brokered deposits involving Mario Renda, the Citizens State Bank hearings in 1976 had virtually no impact. Beebe continued to build up AML Inc. , from his corporate headquarters in Shreveport. But the people of Shreveport began to notice that Herman Beebe had changed. In 1979, saying he needed to devote more time to his business, he stepped down as chairman of the board of Bossier Bank & Trust (though he maintained his ownership) and seemed to withdraw from the mainstream of daily commerce. He stopped going to civic and social functions in Shreveport, and he sank into the anonymity of corporate AML Inc. He spent his days doing million-dollar deals concluded in a matter of minutes and sealed with a handshake. His habit was to rise before dawn and work late.An associate later described to us Beebe’s way of doing business: “He just kind of walked on the edge of fire, just defying people. He lived by the sword and he died by the sword. But I don’t think he was a crook. I do think he violated federal banking laws and savings and loan laws, as most people do who do a lot of creative things, so he was guilty of that, sure.”Beebe adopted a jet-setting life-style, flying out of nearby Shreveport Municipal Airport for business meetings around the country or taking an entourage by limousine to Dallas, which was a straight three-hour shot west on Interstate 20 from Shreveport. When he wasn’t engrossed in business he was at home with his family at their private compound near AMI headquarters, a woodsy secluded colony of stately Southern mansions, pine trees, and vast gracious lawns. Beebe’s home in the family compound was described in the Shreveport Times as an 11,000-square-foot, $1 million Colonial mansion complete with swimming pool, tennis courts, and private pond. There were seven bedrooms, 24-karat-gold-leaf chandeliers from Spain, separate barbecue and smokehouse, bronze-trimmed winding staircase in the foyer, murals on the dining-room walls, and a six-car garage. There were also separate, more modest houses for the Beebe children —in the half-million-dollar range.Beebe maintained a second home at La Costa Country Club in Southern California. La Costa was built by Rapp’s buddy Moe Dalitz and others in the mid-1960s with $97 million from the Teamsters Central States Pension Fund. Beebe had owned property there for 17 years and was an established member of an important social and business circle.13 Most notably, Pete Brewton reported in the Houston Post, he was a business partner with Scott Susalla, whose father, Edward D. “Fast Eddie” Susalla, was a general partner in La Costa.14 Beebe and Susalla owned a loan brokerage and real estate firm called TLC (Texas, Louisiana, California). Susalla also worked with Don Dixon on condo deals in the La Costa area. (In 1985 Scott Susalla would plead guilty to possession of cocaine in one of the biggest drug busts in Southern California history. Federal authorities had accused him and about 100 others of importing a large percentage of Peru’s cocaine into the United States. )But Beebe’s primary interests were still in Louisiana and Texas, where he continued to expand. When Congress announced that it intended to deregulate thrifts—taking the first step with the Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act of 1980—Beebe immediately saw the possibilities. Real estate in Texas was red-hot, and deregulated thrifts could make more commercial real estate loans than ever before, with fewer restrictions than ever before. Beebe began to “diversify,” investing in more S&Ls, and he helped his friends do the same. Word got around that anyone who needed money to get control of a thrift should see Beebe.“He was the man,” said an FBI agent later. “Herman was the man to see,” a thrift regulator agreed. Thus, Beebe became known to a handful of the observant as “the Godfather of Texas Savings and Loans.”Among the authorized visitors to AMI headquarters and the Beebe family compound during this time was Don Dixon, who had become a close family friend and with whom Beebe had made several investments, including a Holiday Inn in Shreveport. Dixon, about ten years younger than Beebe, had adopted the older man as a paternal role model, even calling Beebe “Papaw.” (Some people would later speculate that Dixon’s high-living life-style at Vernon was just an attempt to outperk his mentor, Papaw.) Dixon brought his friend Tyrell Barker into the Beebe clan.Later U.S. Attorney Joe Cage said, “Beebe created Barker and Dixon for his benefit, their benefit, everybody’s benefit but the American taxpayers. ” Both Dixon’s and Barker’s thrifts sold Beebe’s credit life insurance policies to their borrowers. Beebe’s right-hand man at AMI, Dale Anderson, later said that AMI netted $2. 5 million in two years through Vernon’s sales alone. For a time Beebe even kept a two-room suite in the Vernon Savings building. Anderson explained how it worked:“We were very careful about how we worded it. If a borrower said he’d talk to his own insurance man, we’d say, ‘Fine. That’s probably where you need to get your loan.’ ”Beebe, Dixon, and Barker also networked with the burgeoning S&L community in Texas, arranging millions of dollars in loans for themselves, loans that regulators would later claim weren’t always repaid.“Basically it all boiled down to back scratching,” said the U.S. attorney who later prosecuted Barker. Tom Nevis’s testimony, about a time when Barker approached him for a loan, showed how the back scratching worked:“He (Barker) said, ‘You owe me a loan. Try to get me a loan.’ … I never crossed Barker. . . . Barker was always saying, ‘You do this and I’ll help you out.’ … He done a lot of that.”15A deal negotiated with a Beebe-controlled bank or savings and loan, according to former Beebe associates, might work something like this: Someone who wanted a real estate development loan would be required to borrow more than he needed and to use the excess as Beebe directed (to pay off a loan that Beebe owed or that was owed to him, or to buy stock in a Beebe bank). And once the development was completed, a Beebe associate might buy it with another (overfunded) loan from a Beebe-controlled institution. The whole process resembled a Ponzi scheme (that could only last as long as real estate values were climbing).“What happened was that people who came to us for money had to buy something,” a Beebe associate told the Dallas Morning News.Beebe built a number of important relationships, each serving a particular need, each giving Beebe access to an important arena. With Barnes, Beebe was plugged into old-Texas banking, insurance, and political circles. With Dixon and Barker, he was part of the wild-‘n’-crazy thrift owners of Dallas.16With Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards and Judge Edmund Reggie, Beebe would gain entry into the highest circles of political power in Louisiana.Edwin Edwards was an ambitious politician, and beginning in 1954 he would hold political office in Louisiana for almost 30 years. He started as a city councilman in Crowley and subsequently served in the Louisiana Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives. He was governor of the state of Louisiana from 1972 to 1980, took a break for one term, and served again from 1984 to 1988. Until he lost his bid in 1988 for an unprecedented fourth term as governor, he had a campaign record of 16-0.Edwards was a flamboyant gambling man, a self-admitted”proud and egotistical person” who reportedly used to boast that the only way he could lose an election was “to be caught in bed with either a dead girl or a live boy.” He gambled in Las Vegas under aliases like T. Wong, and U.S. Attorney Joe Cage said Edwards and Beebe traveled together to Las Vegas and Southern California. For two years during Edwards’s four-year sabbatical from the governorship (1980 to 1984) he was on Beebe’s payroll, earning $100,000 a year working for AML (Later Cage would say the accommodation seemed to exhibit”the hallmark of influence peddling.”)When Edwards was governor of Louisiana his administration became embroiled in the federal government’s pursuit of Carlos Marcello, boss of the New Orleans Mafia. In 1981 Charles Roemer, then Edwards’s commissioner of administration, and Marcello were convicted of federal charges of racketeering. The prosecution played in court some tapes they had made in 1979 of Marcello’s conversations with associates. On the tapes Marcello said, “Man, I know better than you. man, ’bout them politicians. , . . Edmund [referring to Edwin Edwards) and me all right, but I can’t see him every day. . . . He’s the strongest sonofabitchin’ governor we ever had. He fuck with women and play dice, but won’t drink. How do you like dat?” Edwards’s lieutenant governor in 1979 was James Fitzmorris. Marcello was recorded as saying, “Fitzmorris? All he can do is ask a favor. He ain’t worth a shit.”17 Dallas Morning News reporters Bill Lodge and Allen Pusey reported that at this same time Marcello was a borrower at Beebe-controlled Pontchartrain State Bank near New Orleans. James McKigney, Pontchartrain’s president, testified 18 that Pontchartrain had lent money to Marcello. Marcello’s son Joseph, and several corporations connected with Marcello. McKigney replaced Beebe as president of Beebe’s Bossier Bank & Trust when Beebe resigned in 1979.19 Marcello attorney Anthony J. Graffagnino20 was a director in 1983 of Sunbelt Life Insurance Co., which had its headquarters in Beebe’s Shreveport office (another Sunbelt director was Governor Edwards’s commissioner of financial institutions, who supervised state-chartered banks and savings and loans).Edwards’ close associate Judge Edmund Reggie was a former Crowley city judge in the town where Edwards had once practiced law. Some observers felt Reggie may have been the real power behind Edwards, that it was Reggie who pulled the governor’s strings. He was Edwards’s personal attorney, served as his executive counsel while he was governor, and headed up Edwards’s transition team when he resumed the governorship in 1984. Reggie also was a close personal friend of Senator Ted Kennedy and had been Louisiana campaign manager of John Kennedy’s 1960 campaign.21Judge Reggie was a Louisiana power broker. And he was both a banker and a thrift owner. He owned the National Bank of Bossier City, in the same Shreveport suburb as Beebe’s Bossier Bank & Trust.– He started Acadia Savings and Loan in Crowley in 1957 and had been a director ever since. And he and Beebe owned stock together in several financial institutions. Reggie told us they had been friends for about 30 years, and they were associates in nursing homes, insurance companies, and real estate ventures. Investigators for the comptroller of the currency said several of Judge Reggie’s real estate projects were financed by Beebe banks, and Reggie’s banks made loans to Beebe-related entities.Herman Beebe had positioned himself at the vortex of each of these separate  but interlocking circles of influence—the Ben Barnes, Dixon/Barker, and Edwards/Reggie axes. By the end of 1981 Beebe was a man to be reckoned with. Beebe was prepared to use everything he had learned over the years about banking and newly deregulated thrifts to build potentially the most powerful and corrupt banking network ever seen in the U.S.CHAPTER TWENTYBeebe Gets CagedOn January 8, 1982—just two days before Dixon took control at Vernon Savings in Texas—Joe Cage was sworn in as a U.S. attorney and assigned to the Shreveport office. Cage grew up in Monroe, about 100 miles due east of Shreveport in northern Louisiana, and throughout his high school career he was an outstanding athlete. When he was a sophomore,in spite of the fact that the school had no track team,he threw the javelin 203 feet, a U.S. record at the time. He served a tour of duty in the Marine Corps, returned to college, and at one time aspired to become an FBI agent. Instead he became a practicing attorney and spent the next ten years as a prosecutor in U.S. attorneys’ offices and in private practice. In January 1982 President Ronald Reagan appointed him U.S. attorney, and he and his family moved to Shreveport.Through the years Cage had worked on several cases of financial fraud and, unfortunately for Herman Beebe, he had developed a keen interest in white collar crime. He liked to quote a line from an old Woody Guthrie song (“Pretty Boy Floyd”) that went:As through this world I’ve rambled, I’ve seen lots of funny men. Some will rob you with a six-gun, some with a fountain pen.Joe Cage was to white-collar swindlers what Elliot Ness was to bootleggers. It was (and remains) rare to find a U.S. attorney familiar with the ways and methods of the professional white collar criminal, their intricate paper trails and byzantine multimillion-dollar frauds. Untangling the deals is in itself an art, and explaining them to a jury of twelve honest men and women borders on the miraculous. But Cage found the cases both challenging and fascinating, and when he moved to Shreveport in 1982 he ran up against the Dr. Moriarity of his career—Herman K. Beebe.When Cage arrived in Shreveport a white-collar fraud case was already in the early stages. It involved a smooth and wealthy French businessman who lived in Texas, Albert Prevot, who was accused of defrauding the Small Business Administration by getting SBA loans and then diverting the money to his own uses. Assigned to work with Cage on the case was FBI Special Agent C Ellis Blount.Blount became Cage’s indispensable right-hand man. He had a background in business law and shared Cage’s interest in white-collar crime. They actually liked the challenge of wading through thousands of documents to piece together complex business transactions designed specifically to leave a cold trail. They developed a close working relationship, and eventually the two of them together would bring down the Beebe empire.Cage and Blount worked through the months on the Prevot case, and as they tightened the screws Prevot decided to try to make a deal. He offered to tell Cage what he knew about Shreveport businessman Herman Beebe, who was, he said, involved in all kinds of illegal activities. Cage said he was interested, and by September 1982 he had two plea agreements in the Prevot case and enough information about Beebe’s affairs to justify empaneling a federal grand jury. What Cage had stumbled onto was Beebe’s maze of business relationships with banks and corporations.In November, Cage convened the grand jury and he and Blount went to work unraveling Beebe’s tangled affairs for the jurors.“We’d have, say, 10 issues, trying to get them resolved with the grand jury, and in solving those 10, 15 more would come up,” Cage told us later. It was like trying to nail jelly to the wall. Beebe’s business deals were five dimensional. They went in every direction, and in every direction Cage said he saw transactions that worried him. He discovered that many banks and thrifts in Louisiana and surrounding states had participations and take-out agreements (interlocking financial arrangements) with Beebe’s Bossier Bank & Trust, and Cage began to fear for the integrity—and safety—of the area’s banking system. Cage and Blount alone handled all the grand jury documents, all the witnesses. They worked long hours, determined to get to the bottom of the complicated case. As Cage called witnesses to testify before the grand jury, word of the investigation trickled back to Beebe. Cradually, tension grew in the Beebe camp.At first Beebe just tried to shrug it off. 1983 should have been one of the best years of his life. He was flush with what seemed like an endless supply of money from numerous financial institutions, institutions whose owners or officers were in place because Herman Beebe had put them there. He embarked upon an expansion program. In April he broke ground on a $12 million seven story glass office building in his AMI complex that became known around town as the AMI Tower. Shreveport people called it an ivory tower because it was “out in the middle of nowhere.” On the top floor were four palatial offices, one at each corner, where Beebe and his top echelon of officers directed a fast-paced operation that employed almost 6,000 people, over 1,000 of whom lived and worked in the Shreveport area. AMI had 17 subsidiaries and connections with 14 other companies, with after-tax income of over $4 million and assets of $155 million.In March 1984 a mutual friend arranged for Beebe”s now ex-wife, Mary, to visit the Reagans at their Santa Barbara ranch, near her own second home in Santa Barbara, and the public relations blitz was on. The Shreveport Times ran a full-page article in March 1984, most of it a fawning account of her visit written by Mary, along with pictures of her standing with President Ronald Reagan and Mrs. Reagan at their ranch. It made its point—Beebe had friends who had friends in vervy high places.Across town from the AMI Tower, in a plain corner office on the third floor of the Federal Building,1 Cage and Blount were spending hundreds of hours combing through evidence and laying their trap. Cage became so convinced that Beebe was a danger to the banking and thrift community that he personally conducted the Beebe investigation. The grand jury was meeting once a week in Alexandria, over 100 miles south of Shreveport, so Cage was absent from his Shreveport office for days at a time. Under his personal direction the grand jury heard 150 witnesses and stayed in session for two years. Cage and Blount methodically formed a cordon around Beebe and AMI, and then they closed in step by step. On Halloween 1984, Beebe was indicted, along with three AMI officers and the CEO of Bossier Bank & Trust. They were charged with 21 counts of fraud.Beebe was accused of having an AMI subsidiary illegally borrow $1 million from the Small Business Administration in a series of complex transactions that had taken place on New Year’s Eve 1980. He was also accused of having Bossier Bank & Trust loan $1.85 million to Albert Prevot (the French businessman whose plea agreement spawned the empaneling of the Beebe grand jury), who then passed it through four corporations and on to AMI, thus allowing Beebe to avoid regulations against banks making loans to their owners. In response to a defense motion the judge separated the charges into two trials —the SBA case and the Bossier Bank case.Beebe maintained an ominous silence in the wake of the indictments, but AMI, Inc., came out swinging, releasing a strong statement in defense of the five accused men.“They [the accusations) are the product of an investigation by a U.S. attorney and an FBI agent who for more than two years have demonstrated the desire to obtain an indictment at any cost.” The accused high-powered defense team of 15 attorneys included flamboyant attorney Richard “Racehorse” Haynes of Houston and Camille Gravel, who was one of Louisiana’s leading criminal defense lawyers, an advisor to Governor Edwin Edwards and Judge Reggie’s best friend.The Beebe children, who had heretofore stayed out of the public eye, fell in behind their father. Though the children were grown and Mary and Herman were divorced, the Beebes remained a close family. Beebe’s son, Herman, Jr., and Beebe’s two sons-in-law worked for him. Throughout the two-year grand jury investigation, they had all believed it would come to nothing.“I am a human being and I make a lot of mistakes,” daughter Pamtold reporters, “and my daddy does, too, but I know he would never set out to harm or deceive somebody or take anything that didn’t belong to him.” [LOL DC]Daughter Easter Bunny’s husband, David, was one of the accused (though charges against him were later dropped).“It was almost comical,” said Bunny in her Louisiana drawl, “to think David could be indicted. Anybody who knows David would think, ‘not sweet little David.’ We are just thankful Camille Gravel, defense attorney was available. He is the kindest, most caring person. We must have looked to him like two little lost lambs.” [They love to lay it on thick! lol DC]Many of the 1,000-plus AMI employees in Shreveport took personal offense at the attack on their employer. They held prayer meetings in the AMI Tower and turned out at important times to show support for their boss. The grumbling against Cage had begun.“The ones [AMI employees] I’ve talked to,” said an employee,”wondered what Mr. Cage has against our boss. It seems so personal, like a vendetta. We wondered why the government is spending so much money to go after one man. ”When the first trial began in January 1985, Beebe’s family and friends, including ex-wife Mary, faithfully took their places on wooden benches in the courtroom at the Federal Building in Shreveport. During breaks they huddled in small groups, speaking in quiet tones, exchanging subdued smiles, obviously under tremendous strain. Outside the courtroom the whole town of Shreveport waited to see what would happen to one of Shreveport’s best-known citizens.Within a few days the prosecution and the defense rested their cases and the judge sent the jury out to deliberate. On January 17, 1985, the jurors came back in with a verdict. All eyes in the standing-room-only courtroom were on Judge Tom Stagg when at 1:10 p.m. he read the jury’s decision: Guilty. The jury had found Beebe guilty of the overall charge of defrauding the SBA. They did not find him guilty, however, of several specific charges of lying or benefiting from the loans. Beebe was sentenced to 200 hours community service and ordered to pay a $21,000 fine and $1 million in restitution.With hardly time to catch their breaths, the attorneys, defendants, family, friends, and reporters gathered on February 4 in a courtroom in Lafayette, Louisiana, 200 miles south of Shreveport. There the second half of the trial, dealing with the Bossier Bank charges, was to be held. Cage charged that Beebe had defrauded his Bossier Bank & Trust by having the bank make a loan to Albert Prevot that was secretly routed to AMI. Cage said the purpose of the transaction, which took place on New Year’s Eve 1980, was to improve the looks of AMI’s balance sheet at the end of the year. Then Beebe returned the money, via Prevot, to Bossier Bank. Beebe was again represented by Camille Gravel, a distinguished white-haired Southern gentleman who sounded like a Baptist preacher in the courtroom.“Herman Beebe is a builder,” thundered Gravel, “the kind of man that has helped to build this country. He has risen from the red clay hills of north Louisiana to the position he now occupies as a leader of the business community. . . . Any conviction of any of the defendants in this case carries with it a life sentence. Mr. Beebe’s career as a prominent and successful businessman would be over. The blight of a conviction would stain him for the rest of his life.”Gravel told the jury that whatever loans Mr. Beebe received were in the course of legitimate business. The loans had all been repaid. Besides, what was illegal about trying to make your financial statement look better at the end of the year? Where was the harm?Cage was unmoved. “It wasn’t a legitimate loan, merely a true and classic sham loan to a person who agreed to do a favor.”But this time Cage did not prevail. It took the jury 50 minutes to acquit Beebe of all charges. They just could not believe Beebe had intended to defraud his own bank. When Judge Tom Stagg read the verdict the courtroom erupted in shouts of joy. Beebe seemed stunned and declined comment, but Mary Beebe said emotionally, “I’m so grateful. I don’t know what to say. I really am so thankful. So grateful to God, so grateful to the lawyers and the judge and so grateful to the jury.” Someone in the background yelled about a phone call to the governor. Smiling supporters hugged each other and pumped every friendly hand. A disappointed Joe Cage led his team from the courtroom without a word. The score stood even at one-to-one. Cage went back to his office, and he and Blount started all over again, spreading out the deals, looking at the connections, following the money. Three months later, on June 4, Cage convened a second grand jury to investigate Herman Beebe.Cage’s onslaught took its toll on Beebe. He began to have difficulty finding people willing to do business with him. He was a convicted felon ,convicted of loan fraud. He found it increasingly difficult to borrow money. His name, and the names of his companies, became like red flags when a bank examiner found them on a list of loans. Many of the officials of the 200 to 300 banks and savings and loans that he typically did business with were called to testify before the grand jury, and many of them decided Beebe was just too hot to handle. They stopped associating with him.Beebe, a man who had lived a very private life in recent years, suddenly found himself and his business affairs laid open to public view, “My company was leveraged, like so many companies are,” he explained to Shreveport Times reporter Linda Farrar.”And the turn the investigation took just cut my credit off totally. I had no choice but to start liquidating. I just had so much bad publicity … it had just pretty well done away with my opportunity to make a living. … It just went downhill in a hell of a hurry.”Loss of insurance business was especially difficult for Beebe to sustain because it had been an important source for the cash flow his other businesses required. He began what appeared to be a liquidation of the Beebe empire. Eventually financial institutions, even those with ties to Beebe, were forced to foreclose on most of his holdings (including the AMI Tower), and he sold whatever was not mortgaged to the hilt. But federal investigators said he had put many of his assets into his children’s names, and they believed he continued to control still more investments through third parties.Cage and Blount proceeded to prepare the new case against Beebe. Their investigation drew the attention of other federal agencies. Two conferences were held, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Memphis, Tennessee, between federal prosecutors and state and federal regulators, and between April and June 1985 the comptroller of the currency prepared the series of secret reports on Beebe’s banking activities that first clued us in to the scope of Beebe’s influence. After we obtained a copy of the reports, federal officials told us that while the documents might contain minor errors, they stood behind them as a fair and accurate assessment of Beebe’s influence in banking and savings and loan circles in 1985.Compiled independently of Cage’s investigation, the reportsrevealed 12 national banks that could “in some way be controlled or influenced by Beebe.” Key Beebe figures at those banks included Edmund Reggie and Don Dixon, the reports said. Listed, too, was Harvey McLean, who owned Palmer National Bank in Washington, D.C., and who had a multimillion-dollar line of credit at Bossier Bank & Trust. McLean was also a director of Paris Savings and Loan, which Dixon associates had said was Dixon’s “junk S&L.”The comptroller of the currency report then listed 13 national banks that Beebe might “exert some influence over.” Listed as being the link between Beebe and some of these banks wereEd McBirney (owner of Sunbelt Savings), Jarrett Woods(owner of Western Savings)2Carroll Kelly (part of the network exposed by the failure of Citizens State Bank in 1976 and now an owner of Continental Savings in Houston), andTyrell Barker. The OCC study listed 55 state banks (in Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas) and 29 savings and loans(in Colorado, California, Louisiana, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas) “controlled by Beebe and his associates. …” Among the S&Ls listed were Key, Continental, Mercury, Paris, State/Lubbock, Sunbelt, Vernon, and Western. Among the people mentioned as a Beebe-bank associate wasRex Cauble, described in the report as “a convicted drug dealer who has had massive debt at Bossier Bank & Trust.” Cauble owed two other Beebe-related banks $1.5 million and owned stock in two others. (See Appendix A for full, unedited OCC report.)One hundred and nine banks and thrifts had been pinpointed by the comptroller of the currency’s investigators as having a tight enough relationship with Beebe to be worthy of serious concern. The report so worried the comptroller that it was brought to the attention of Attorney General Ed Meese, the FSLIC, and the FDIC at a joint meeting of the Justice Department’s new Bank Fraud Working Group. They realized that with Beebe’s extended network of influence, he could shift fraudulent deals not only from institution to institution but from regulatory system to regulatory system—which would make him almost impossible to stop. A loan he wanted to hide could be structured through federally regulated or state-regulated thrifts, banks, and insurance companies all over the country.The information in the OCC report would not have startled U.S. Attorney Joe Cage and FBI Special Agent Ellis Blount had they known of it, but it was not shared with them. On their own they forged steadily ahead, presenting documents, evidence, and witnesses to the second Beebe grand jury.Joe Cage’s hot breath got to be too much for Beebe and suddenly in late 1985 he packed up and moved from Shreveport to Dallas to start a new life. “I left town,” Beebe said later, “because the atmosphere was such that I just felt like it would be very difficult to—” He interrupted himself and then continued,”It’s not difficult for me to make a living. I could make a living on the Sahara Desert. But I had to get to an atmosphere that was at least better than where I was.”Beebe started life in Dallas on a high note by marrying his girlfriend from Shreveport. Ostensibly, they were building a new life together from scratch, and 1986 was a hard year to get started. S&Ls were dropping like flies—that summer Dixon resigned from Vernon, McBirney resigned from Sunbelt, and Barker was indicted—and the atmosphere in North Dallas, where Beebe had an office, was one of deepening gloom. The runaway real estate development craze had resulted in such a glut that shopping centers and condos stood vacant all over town. Dallas had about 38 million square feet of unused office space (equivalent to 17 Empire State Buildings). Dallas reporter Byron Harris said of 1986, “The silence of deals not being made was deafening.” Still Beebe somehow always seemed to have money. With his empire in shambles, where was he getting it?“If you’re interested in Beebe, you should be interested in Southmark,“a source told us one day. “Have you seen the transcripts of Southmarks casino licensing hearings in Las Vegas? I think you’d find them interesting.”We had found this Dallas-based company in some of our other thrift investigations. Now we were to learn that Southmark had made nearly $30 million in loans to Beebe (and Beebe related companies) after his conviction. Altogether, Southmark conducted nearly $90 million in business deals with Beebe. Some of the business was paid for in Southmark stock. The company’s 1985 10-K showed that Herman Beebe held nearly 62 percent of Southmark’s Series E Preferred stock. (FSLIC later charged that Beebe used some of that stock to pay off a loan he had at Edmund Reggie’s Acadia Savings and Loan.)Southmark was a “Forbes 500” company based in Dallas and run by Gene Phillips, a calculating, tough negotiator, described by competitors as one of the most astute real estate men in the country. He was of medium height and build, sandy-colored hair, not particularly imposing. But he took a hard-nosed, structured approach to deals that awed people on the other side of the negotiating table. Phillips was a chemical engineer who had been bitten by the real estate bug.BusinessWeek reported that in 1973, when Phillips was 35, he had dealt his way right into bankruptcy in South Carolina. To pay off his debts he went to work for one of his larger creditors and later bought the company. In 1978 he tried to buy a bank in Georgia, but the comptroller of the currency blocked the purchase because Phillips, he said, had not told the truth on his application. But, true to form. Phillips still made $2 million on a $4 million investment when he sold the bank shares he had bought before his application was denied.Then in 1979 he and his partner. New York city attorney William Friedman, began to buy up the stock of a defunct Dallas real estate investment trust. By 1981 they had acquired control, and five years and about 35 acquisitions later, they had built Southmark into a publicly traded financial services company with 27,000 employees (including subsidiaries) and nearly $10 billion in assets. Southmark’s extraordinary increase in assets attracted a lot of attention, and Phillips’s eagerness to take unorthodox risks raised eyebrows. Forbes magazine said he and Friedman ran Southmark more like their own private investment company than a big public corporation. For example, when one of Phillips’s own companies was called upon to repay a construction loan, Phillips sold the company to Southmark and let Southmark repay the loan. The deal cost Southmark $9.5 million. Pressed to explain Southmark’s willingness to take on the debt, a Southmark officer told reporters the venture “looked like an attractive project.”After thrifts were deregulated, Phillips hurriedly searched for one to finance his acquisitions. In 1983 Southmark acquiredSan Jacinto Savings, and for three years the S&L was under Phillips’s control. But in 1986 worried regulators ordered the S&L to stop funding Southmarks purchases, and Phillips had to rely on another favored way to raise cash. That year he raised $950 million through Drexel Burnham Lambert. In fact, much of Southmarks explosion in assets, according to SEC filings, was financed by junk bonds marketed for Phillips by his close friend Michael Milken, Drexel Burnham Lambert’s junk bond king. {Forbes reported Drexel Burnham made well over $50 million in fees by financing Southmark and its subsidiaries.) When Phillips borrowed money,’ he took more than he needed and used the extra to invest in other companies’ junk bonds being marketed by Milken—a common practice of many of Drexel Burnham favorite customers. (The practice bore a disturbing resemblance to the cash-for trash deals, where a thrift borrower was required to take more money than he wanted and to use the excess to buy a piece of junk property from the thrift. One year, The Wall Street Journalreported, Drexel raised $450 million for Southmark, and Phillips used all of it to buy other junk bonds Drexel was promoting.)Southmark became the largest real estate-based conglomerate financed by Milken.5 It may also have been one of the most complex. Even seasoned Wall Street analysts admitted to reporters they couldn’t figure out the company’s maze and layers of debt. What they did know, however, was that Southmark had a lot of debt coming due all at once in the early 1990s.That outstanding debt didn’t seem to phase Phillips. Records showed that Southmark paid him over $1 million in 1988. He and his wife owned a $1 million condominium on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles and a $10 million estate in Dallas (previously owned by Lamar Hunt and, then, James Ling). He traveled in a $3.5 million DC-9 that used to belong to singer Kenny Rogers.Perhaps it was his hunger for cash that sent Southmark to the gaming tables, a move that unwittingly exposed the company’s close ties to Herman Beebe. Whatever the reason, the afternoon of November 5, 1986, found Phillips, Friedman, and their attorney sitting at attention before the Nevada Gaming Control Board. The commission’s job was to make sure no one with criminal associations or backgrounds got a casino license. Southmark owned the land where the Silver City Casino in Las Vegas was located and had worked out an agreement with the owners of the casino that Southmark could collect a percentage of the casino’s gambling revenues if the gaming control board approved.But from the opening of the session it became clear that what the gaming control board wanted to talk about was Herman Beebe. As soon as the board had dispensed with preliminaries, one member got to the point:“Mr. Phillips, could you please describe first of all how the relationship, business relationship or otherwise, with Mr. Beebe came about occurring? Secondly, how it’s evolved and, if you would, what the current relationship with Mr. Beebe is?”Phillips said that in 1984, shortly before Beebe was indicted, he and Beebe had reached an agreement for Southmark to purchase Beebe’s nursing homes for almost $100 million. Beebe owned 62 nursing homes in five states with over 6,500 beds.Then, Phillips said, before they could close the deal Beebe “ran into severe financial difficulties” (a euphemism for Beebe’s indictment and the resulting fallout) and Southmark, Phillips contended, had to loan him money to keep him afloat. Otherwise, Phillips said, Beebe might have gone into receivership and the contract between Phillips and Beebe would have been voided. Phillips assured the gaming control board that Southmark would have had nothing to do with Beebe after his indictment had it not been for Phillips’s desire to consummate the purchase of the nursing homes.“Obviously, ” said Phillips, “Mr. Beebe would not be the appropriate or suitable type of individual to have an ongoing relationship with.”But, the commission member persisted, “. . . you loaned Mr. Beebe an additional $29.6 million in a total of five other loans and made three other purchases from Mr. Beebe, all after the date of his conviction.” He enumerated the transactions: February, $500,000 loan; April, $14.2 million nursing-home purchase; May, $1 million purchase and $2.5? million loan; June, $1 million loan; August, $25.5 million loan; and December (“almost a year after his conviction on fraud and wire fraud and other charges”), a $7 million purchase of Beebe’s Savings Life insurance Company.“Now, that adds up to $29.6 million 6 in loans after the man was convicted,” the commission member concluded. Then he got to the crux of the commission’s concern. “Mr. Beebe . . . had a $700,000 7 restitution levied [as a result of his 1985 conviction]. Would you know whether Mr. Beebe paid his fine with proceeds of loans from your companies?” and again: “It appears that (Southmark’s loans to Beebe] were for the benefit of Mr. Beebe, to keep his head above water, in a business sense, so that he could continue operating even after he had been convicted of federal charges.”Phillips and Friedman stood their ground.8 They readily admitted that for a time they were propping Beebe up. They said they even tried to get control of Bossier Bank & Trust. But all of those transactions were part of the original nursing-home purchase agreement, made before Beebe was indicted, or were attempts to keep him in business until they could conclude the deal. And all the loans they made to Beebe, they said, had been repaid with the exception of $1 million.Phillips’s explanations evidently satisfied the gaming control board, and after a lengthy discussion of other topics, such as Phillips’s 1973 bankruptcy, the board approved Southmark’s request. And there our interest in Southmark might have ended, except for the fact that the company had shown up in some of our earlier investigations. We went back to our files and began compiling a list of Southmark’s appearances. Time and time again the company had turned up at the end of our investigation of a failed thrift. Southmark would appear, most often, in the role of scavenger, acquiring the troubled assets of those who had contributed to the failure of the institution. We had found, for example, Southmark or a Southmark subsidiary acquiring assets formerly owned by Mario Renda, Robert Ferrante, Morris Shenker, John B Anderson, and Tom Nevis. Now many of these deals were further confirmed by Phillips’s testimony before the gaming control board:Southmarks Pratt Hotel division acquired the Palace Hotel and Casino project in Puerto Rico, which investigators told us was being developed by Mario Renda and Robert Ferrante until their empires crumbled; Southmark bought the Double Diamond A. Ranch near Reno that had belonged to Tom Nevis;9 Southmark bought some of Morris Shenker’s stock in the Dunes Hotel and Casino when Shenker and John Anderson fell on hard times and tried to buy control of the casino but lost out to a Japanese group; Southmark tried to buy Eureka Federal Savings” liens against Anderson secured by his Maxim Hotel and Casino; Southmark tried to fund the purchase of the Aladdin Hotel and Casino by Harry Wood, a Shreveport native who ran the Dunes’s junket operations;10 Southmarks S&L subsidiary, San Jacinto Savings, got media attention when it tried to buy troubled Continental Savings in Houston (Beebe had bankrolled Carroll Kelly and David Wylie in their purchase of Continental).11 And, finally, we discovered on a 1988 trip to Shreveport that Southmark now owned the AMI Tower.Then there were the “coincidences. ” For example, Southmark’s 10-K showed Southmark owned 37 percent of Pratt Hotel Corporation,12 and in 1986 Pratt was trying to buy Resorts International (which had opened Atlantic City’s first casino and which was building the $525 million Taj Mahal casino hotel there). Funny, we thought. We’d just learned from Cage that Judge Edmund Reggie had been a $10,000-a-month consultant for Resorts International for about a year. When we checked with Reggie, he said the two events were unrelated.Then we found Southmarks fingerprints at Silverado Savings and Loan in Denver.13 Neil Bush, son of then Vice President George Bush, became director on Silverado’s board in 1985 but resigned just days after his father was nominated in 1988 as the Republican candidate for president and just three months before Silverado was forced by regulators to establish nearly $200 million in loan loss reserves to cushion the thrift from expected losses on shaky deals. Neil Bush said he resigned for personal reasons. Others said his resignation was to spare his father the embarrassment of Silverado Savings’ condition. (Silverado collapsed in late 1988.) After all, one of George Bush’s jobs as vice president during Ronald Reagan’s first term had been to chair the Bush Task Group on Regulation of Financial Services. (The group was part of Ronald Reagan’s deregulation apparatus. It died a quiet death in August 1983 after accomplishing very little. )14After we had collected all of this information about Southmark, we asked ourselves what it meant, that Southmark, a giant corporation, had turned up in investigations that we had thought at the outset were entirely unrelated. A disturbingly large number of our trails led to Southmark in one way or another. The company appeared to be a major player in the network of people we had been tracking—often there to pick up the pieces whenever one of our thrift pirates hit rough water. Apparently someone else was wondering as well. When the Dallas Times Herald printed the list of the 400 individuals whose records were subpoenaed by the Justice Department’s fraud task force in 1987, Gene Phillips was among them. Southmark itself began to show up on the business pages of daily newspapers, as Phillips and Friedman were increasingly forced to deny that Southmark was in deep trouble. Its Houston thrift, San Jacinto, was put under a supervisory order in 1988 and forced to take almost $140 million in write-downs. Regulators forced Southmark to remove two of its three directors from San Jacinto’s board, and in early 1989, under pressure from Southmark investors and directors, Phillips and Friedman resigned from their positions at Southmark.The Southmark puzzle was one of those black holes into which a reporter could disappear and never be heard from again. One normally reliable source even told us he had phone records showing that a real estate broker who had close dealings with both Southmark and Carlos Marcello had also made phone calls to Major General John Singlaub, of Contra-gate fame. We were intrigued, but we had a deadline to meet and we had to leave the further unraveling of Southmark for later. But we had discovered a powerful player in the thrift game and we had learned who it was that had kept Beebe afloat after Cage convicted him. Thanks to associates like Southmark, Beebe was not ever likely to be down and out.Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering – Part 3Copyright 2011 by Linda Minor, all rights reservedGeneral Homes* was a large publicly traded land development company operating in Houston, which had an option to buy the Texas land mentioned in the previous segments. The feasibility of the project from General Homes’ perspective depended totally upon the cost of constructing a road and necessary drainage through the property, as required under the option. In addition to getting control of VisionBanc, Corson also had to be responsible for having a road and drainage work constructed through the General Homes property, and since he did not have the money for that, he spent a great deal of time entertaining a certain judge in Houston, who had the authority to make recommendations to the governing body in charge of roads and bridges in Harris County.County Attorney Mike Driscoll’s civil lawsuit filed in 1993 against County Judge Jon Lindsay, alleged that the judge, who was chief administrator for the county, had accepted numerous favors from Robert Corson in exchange for Lindsay’s agreement to “cause the county to build a road through the Park 45 land and thereby improve the value of the land.”The first evidence of the complicity of the judge in the developer’s scheme was not made public until seven years later by Corson’s former employee, Billy Wayne Chester, who brought the information to Mike Driscoll in the hope of protecting himself from future federal prosecutorial misconduct in a guilty plea to bank fraud. Chester was influenced in this decision by his friend, John Ballis, a dentist (who got into land development at the behest of his father-in-law) who was then appealing a U.S. District Court conviction on charges brought after Ballis had completed his probation under his own guilty plea. The feds’ position was that Ballis had failed to reveal all crimes in which he had participated, thereby releasing them from the terms of the plea agreement prohibiting further prosecution. Ballis argued that, though he repeatedly attempted to provide evidence of his having paid a million-dollar bribe to Commissioner Bob Eckels, the prosecutors refused to investigate the allegations.Billy Chester had been a high school teacher and coach when he was approached in the late 1970’s by Carl Stockholm, an old friend working in one of Walter Mischer’s banks. Stockholm hired Chester and trained him in the real estate field, where he soon came in contact with Corson. During the Houston land boom that occurred, Chester left banking to work in the land development company Corson had formed with his mother, B.J. Garman. Prior to Chester’s employment, Corson had worked with a man named Andy Howard, a vice-president at General Homes, buying unrestricted reserves in General Homes subdivisions and developing them for commercial use—either selling or leasing to convenience stores and other enterprises. According to Chester, it was Howard who first introduced Corson to Jon Lindsay, during a luncheon meeting at a restaurant Lindsay frequented in the American General Insurance Co. building. Andy Howard was also intricately involved in the contract negotiations between Corson and General Homes on the Park 45 property.Andy Howard was obviously acquainted with Jon Lindsay because in April 1985 Lindsay appointed him to the boards of the Harris County Housing Authority and the Housing Finance Corporation (HFC).[1] If we assume that Andy Howard’s appointment was consistent with the other appointments Lindsay made and with the proponents of those who favored creation of the Housing Finance Corporation, from whom was Jon Lindsay getting his instructions?How are all the Lindsay appointees related? For clues, here’s a quote from a lawsuit Howard filed against Robert Corson on August 2, 1986:Previously in 1985, Plaintiff, Andy Howard was employed by General Homes Corporation* in the position of Vice-President. His duties primarily revolved around analysis of, purchase and sale of real property and the development of same. In connection with this employment, Andy Howard enjoined [sic] a substantial salary, numerous financial benefits and the various advantageous attributes incident to this employment.In connection with this employment, Andy Howard met Robert Corson. Robert Corson, B.J. Garman, Individually and d/b/a Corson & Garman, Defendants herein, were also actively engaged in Real Estate Development and sale. In connection with the business dealings that brought them together, Robert Corson became familiar with the capabilities of Andy Howard. Impressed by these capabilities, Robert Corson requested Andy Howard to leave General Homes and to take an employment position with Robert Corson and his organization. After a series of discussions, during which Andy Howard made known to Robert Corson a reluctance to give up the significant benefits and advantages that were inurring [sic] to Andy Howard as a result of his employment with General Homes, Robert Corson induced Andy Howard to sever his relationship with General Homes and to become employed by Robert Corson’s organization by virtue of a promise that Andy Howard would receive fifteen percent (15%) of the benefits arising out of and incident to the various business dealings and transactions that Andy Howard was to engage in (and that Andy Howard was to work on). * * *[fn]Additionally, in a prior business transaction, individuals by the name of Clyde M. Speed and Robert M. Ley desired to convey to Andy Howard certain property. It was desired that this property be taken and held in the name of Robert Corson, Trustee. At all times Andy Howard was the beneficiary of this Trust and Robert Corson was the Trustor [?] owing feduciary [sic] duties to Andy Howard in connection with this transaction. Further to this, Clyde M. Speed and Robert M. Ley conveyed this property into the name of Robert Corson, Trustee. . . . At all times, however, Andy Howard was the beneficial and equitable owner of the property and the interest of Robert Corson was solely holding Title in the capacity as a Trustee.The problem arose, according to the petition, when “[s]uddenly, in the spring of 1986, and without any explanation or prior warning, Robert Corson advised Andy Howard that Robert Corson no longer desired that Andy Howard be affiliated with Robert Corson, B.J. Garman or Corson & Garman.”From this information, it can be seen that at the time Andy Howard was appointed to the board of the HFC he worked for General Homes, and thereafter for Robert Corson, whose primary source of business was from General Homes. If we assume for purposes of argument that Andy Howard and Robert Corson were working on behalf of the controlling shareholders of General Homes in their attempt to have the road and drainage work through Park 45 constructed at county expense, then Corson’s actions of using sham corporations to purchase land from himself makes more sense, BECAUSE it was General Homes which ultimately benefited from the looting of the savings and loan companies which made the loans to the straw borrowers who never made a single payment. General Homes kept a first lien on the property in the sale to Corson and also received cash from the proceeds of loans secured by second liens. When General Homes foreclosed on the first lien, the savings and loans (taxpayers) were wiped out, but General Homes got to keep the proceeds of those loans and also got the land back free and clear, with a new road in place. It was left to receivers for the creditors to sue to get back any fraudulently induced loan funds.birth of general homes
    General Homes was formed as a subsidiary of First General Realty, which was itself a subsidiary of First Mortgage Co.[1] According to a 1984 Houston Post story, First General began as a residential developer in Harris County with the Meyerland Additions and with Meyerland Plaza Shopping Center. The Post article stated:The George Meyer family owned the land and was a partner in the development, but later sold out of the project, as did First General, and the Meyerland Co. was purchased early this year [1984] by the Houston-based Development Group, Inc.[2]That one paragraph thus connects General Homes, the Meyer family and Mike Adkinson. The article continues:Other Houston communities developed by First General include Nottingham, Ponderosa Forest, Ashford Forest, the Villages of Lakeside and four early subdivisions developed in the Clear Lake area in partnership with the firm then called the Humble Co. and now known as the Exxon Corp.* * *
    Tom Robinson, originally with First Mortgage, is the actual founder of First General, which started as a sideline to the mortgage business in the 1950s. First General employees bought the company from Robinson in the 1970s. He is now retired.Richard H. Skinner, First General chairman, and H. Fred Schoenberg, president, along with John L. Mattern, vice president and treasurer, were hired away from Arthur Andersen & Co. as accountants and management consultants in the late 1970s and are now among the owners of First General.Richard G. Carlson, vice president for marketing, who is now buying in as an owner, notes that the sellers kept a piece of the action when First General was acquired three years ago by the Milwaukee-based Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co.We will return to Northwestern Mutual’s name repeatedly as this study continues.[fn] General Homes Corporation was affiliated with the American Savings & Loan Association of Miami, which was dragged down in 1985 by the ESM Government Securities fraud. [1] The HFC was organized as a non-profit county-sponsored corporation which was authorized by Texas law to issue tax-exempt bonds to fund construction and purchases of low and moderate income housing–both single and multi-family. Jon Lindsay is the official who recommended its creation by Harris County in 1980, after ordering a study conducted by municipal bond brokers Underwood Neuhaus & Company and First Southwest Company. The first of these brokerage firms had connections to W.S. Farish III and his relatives; the second was at that time being operated in Houston by Howard Pulver and his Manhattan associates with ties to Mainland Savings–ably documented in chapter 4 of Pete Brewton’s book. According to Houston Chronicle reporter Bill Mintz, Lindsay’s friend Tom Masterson “ran the bond and public finance operations at Underwood, Neuhaus & Co. for 29 years before leaving in 1985 to start his own investment and brokerage firm. In 1991, the firm [Masterson Moreland Sauer Whisman] bought the public finance operations of the Houston investment firm Lovett Underwood Neuhaus & Webb.” According to the January 12, 1996 article by Mintz, Masterson’s firm was considering merging with First Southwest of Dallas, headed by Hill Feinberg, who was managing director in the Dallas office of Bear Stearns & Co. for 14 years before buying First Southwest in 1991 with Bob Utley. Utley “is a developer who participated in financier Ronald Perelman’s 1988 acquisition of First Gibraltar.”Interestingly enough, the Underwood, Neuhaus study was ordered to be done by commissioners court on June 9, 1980, although legal documents prepared by Vinson & Elkins drafting the articles of incorporation and bylaws, were forwarded to the brokerage firm five days earlier by V&E attorney Bob Randolph.  The creation of the corporation was approved on June 24, 1980.  Rather than have only the same five board members who were then sitting on the Housing Authority Board, Lindsay proposed increasing the board to nine, and the names of Billy Burge, Richard S. Slocomb, Jack Fields and Paul W. Davis were added.  Davis, Lindsay’s appointee and president ofMortgage and Trust, Inc. of 3100 Travis, resigned from the board in July 1981.  In his place Lindsay appointed W.E. Daniels, president of First Continental Mortgage, a Mischer-controlled investment trust.  Andy Howard replaced O.J. Streigler, a prior appointee, but Howard served only until August 12, 1986, two months after the Park 45/Florida closing.  He was replaced by Steve Krueger, a banker employed by Joe Russo’s Ameriway Savings.W.E. Daniels resigned in January 1988, citing his commitment to “Rice Center” for allowing him insufficient time to serve.  His resignation was on letterhead of D&L Investments of 1360 Post Oak Blvd., Suite 2100.  Daniels’ replacement was Robert M. Dawson, who was at that time president of Liberty Savings Association, and who had previously been a consultant for First Texas Savings of Dallas and president of SGF Investment Service Corporation, a subsidiary of United Savings.  His earliest work history was with Holland Mortgage from 1955 to 1972.Harris County HFC made numerous loans for apartment construction which benefited Continental Savings, a company about which Pete Brewton had much to say in his book.  Continental loaned money to a company called Landmark Developers, Inc., with loans guaranteed by the HFC, which had to be restricted for low income tenants.  In at least one instance Landmark conveyed the property to a limited partnership, of which E. Trine Starnes, Jr. (whom Brewton classed in the same category as Robert Vesco) was general partner [J054366].  Starnes conveyed the apartments a year and a half later to an individual, and the next month there was a foreclosure.  By the end of 1986 the HFC had issued more than $278 million in multi-family bonds and more than $254 million in single-family bonds.  It is unknown how many of the loans went into default, but it appears that the apartments ended up being owned by investors in California.[2] General Homes’ mortgage lending company, FGMC, stands for First General Mortgage Corporation.  In 1981, FGMC’s address was 5353 W. Alabama #401 [G924489].  In deeds of trust dating back to the 1950’s Charles Foley was named as trustee for First Mortgage Co. and for a company called Fidelity Mutual Life Insurance.  In that same year, Charles Foley was appointed as substitute trustee by New York Life Insurance Co., Crown Life, Connecticut General and First General Realty.  In the late 1950’s First Mortgage assigned a great many mortgage loans to Sun Life Insurance Co. of Canada, which had offices in Massachusetts.[3] Houston Post, August 20, 1984.  DGI was the company Mike Adkinson allegedly controlled which was used to loot several savings and loans. Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering … – Quixotic…/land-and-loot-how-to-on-money_21.htmlPart 4 of Land and Loot – Quixotic 5, 2011  Part 4 of Land and Loot. History of Northwestern Mutual Life and its Creators. Who exactly has been involved in the Northwestern Mutual Life …Part 5 of Land and Loot – Quixotic 5, 2011  Part 5 of Land and Loot. CONNECTION BETWEEN SCOTTISH MERCHANTS AND COLONIAL BANKING. The History of Warfare: Culloden …Part 6 of Land and Loot – Quixotic 5, 2011  In 1978 Houston was in the center of a real estate boom. At the same time that the corporation created by a consortium of Suite 8F Crowd …Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering … – Quixotic…/land-and-loot-how-to-on-money_21.htmlMar 21, 2011  General Homes* was a large publicly traded land development company operating in Houston, which had an option to buy the Texas land …Part 7 of Land and Loot – Quixotic 5, 2011  began issuing mortgage-backed securities. The public offering for General Homes also was brought out that year, bringing in money for new …Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering … – Quixotic…/land-and-loot-how-to-on-money_9.htmlMar 9, 2011  Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering – Part 2. Ships, Planes and Mules: Getting Drugs to their. Destination and Banking the Cash.Part 8 of Land and Loot – Quixotic 16, 2011  Part 8 of Land and Loot. Tracing the Roots of General Homes in Houston. Eden Corporation was one of the names under which General …Land and Loot: A How-To on Money Laundering … – Quixotic…/land-and-loot-how-to-on-money.htmlMar 8, 2011  In the summer of 1986 a land sale occurred which, if analyzed correctly, can reveal the missing links between the actual smuggling and …Musings – Quixotic 8 of Land and Loot. Tracing the Roots of General Homes in Houston Eden Corporation was one of the names under which General Homes Consolidated …The Great Texas Bank Job    So I’m thinking Conroe, Texas was INFESTED with Illegal Realty Transactions Connected to Financing Agreements and Bank Loans for Unlawful Real Estate Sales. Many Many Many Millions of these Swindles have been revealed all across the United States and IN FACT the Subprime Deals are Greatly Infamous.Trillions Stolen …. America Looted – A great WordPress … Great America SCREW JOB All About The Swamp 101 … Great America SCREW JOB All About The Swamp 101; The Great Texas Bank Job … The Down Fall of the Nation; The Great Texas Bank Job ….. The Looted TRILLIONS; The Never Ending Bank Jobs – Felonious Balonias; The State of New York FOIL / FOIA It’s Time For Answers and The Payment of … The Great Texas Bank Job 11, 2005 · George Bush as Governor of TEXAS did all he could to fight me – No Lie !!! Former FBI SAC Mafia MOLE John Connally and the Bush/Clinton kissy, kissy, kissy Gang had Plenty of Company “COMPANY” from the “Texas Banksters” and that Stand Alone Do what ever CIA Bill Casey and William Colby REAGAN / BUSH operate with Looted Billions. The Great Texas Bank Job … Reborn | Trillions Stolen … Great Texas Bank Job Campaign Finance Corruption, Bush Vote Tampering Debacle, Whitewater Style Colonias Land Fraud, the Texas Judicial MAFIA The Florida Vote Heist and a Whole Lot More. (May 26, 2000) I believe that very shortly I will be setup AGAIN on more Red Herring FALSE Charges by Local and Probably Federal Prosecutors. The Great American Manure Job | Trillions Stolen … great texas bank job fbi director chris wray and former us secret service agent rick williams black ops banksters ….. from state to the foundation wipe the servers clean. this is what really actually happened america …. no russians required Occupy JAIL – The Great Texas Bank Job – Google Sites …https:// YOU SAY LAND FLIPPING RED FLAGGING COLONIAS FRAUD THREE TIMES … that campaign contributions may have contributed to lax oversight of subprime lenders. … =daisy+chain+land+flip+bank+looting+S%26L+Scandal,+Ponzi … The Great Texas Bank Job – … The Greatest Texas Bank Job / Felonious Balonias ……Jul 02, 2015 · The Great America SCREW JOB All About The Swamp 101; The Great Texas Bank Job … The Down Fall of the Nation; The Great Texas Bank Job ….. The Looted TRILLIONS; The Never Ending Bank Jobs – Felonious Balonias; The State of New York FOIL / FOIA It’s Time For Answers and The Payment of Damages Mispression of felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job 29, 2004 · Mispression of Felonies, Cover Up The Great Texas Bank Job Fri Oct 29, 2004 10:59 If you are correct, and I have seen bigger surprises, then Mr. Kerry Must Be Delt with as well. Here is a letter I wrote this morning to a friend in the Real Estate Business. 
  • AMERICA LOOTED STUPID ….  Flipping Daisy Chains  ….  Dirt Dealing for TRILLIONS
Houston, Texas : Home of CIA-Mob-Bush Crime Family

Drug money was being funneled through HUD loans to fund the Contras.

KBR, Halliburton, Temple-Inland (on whose board sits the CEO of the Carlyle Group), Air Products and Chemicals (on whose board sits L Paul Bremer), etc. all have a substantial presence in Houston and Ellington Field, Houston, was not only home to Claire Chennault’s Flying Tigers during WWII, whose mercenary efforts were funded by Indo-China’s drug money, but also home to key Iran-Contra personalities in the 1980’s including James R Bath, GWB’s Texas Air National Guard buddy.

Chennault’s Flying Tiger Airline provided planes to Barry Seal’s Mena, Arkansas operation and David “Tex” Hill, was not only a Flying Tiger, but head the Texas Air National Guard when GWB and Bath were there together.

Michael R Bromwich of Sargent Shriver’s Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver and Jacobsen Law Firm in New York…who is now asking for more money to uncover the Harris County Crime Lab debacle?

His work for the Justice Department confirmed the findings of the San Jose Mercury New’s Pulitizer Prize winning author, Gary Webb.

Webb, who supposedly committed suicide on the anniversary of Patrick’s death five days after I sent letter to fellow Presbyterian ministers uncovering this mess, discovered that the CIA had funded Iran-Contra with money from the drug cartels.

Now Bromwich, who was the Justice Departments’ point-man for the Iran-Contra investigation is going to uncover the problems at the Harris County Crime Lab? Really?

His investigation during Iran-Contra didn’t lead to the dismantling of America’s narco-money-laundering schemes and now drug money is going to clean up the problem at the Harris County Crime Lab? My nose isn’t particularly sensitive, but this stinks.

Sargent Shriver’s fellow patriarch of the Kennedy Clan, Joseph Kennedy, was drilling oil wells in Texas with one of the Iran-Contra personalities related to former Harris County DA, Johnny B Holmes, John H. “Jack” Modesett.

It was really under Holmes’ watch that the Houston crime lab turned to mush. It’s Holmes’ hand-picked successor, Harris County DA, Chuck Rosenthal, who is offering to use confiscated drug money to un-stick Bromwich’s “independent investigation” which has run short of cash. Two million wasn’t enough. He needs three million to filter the fiasco. My best bet is that next month it will be four…. and the bucks are sure to be there!

Read former Houston Chronicle writer and author, Peter Brewton’s book, THE MAFIA, CIA and GEORGE BUSH and look up “Kennedy, Joseph P” in the index. It’s all there.

This is why Brewton’s work was the most censored book in American in 1990 and why the mainline media ignored him and why this talented, award winning author is now a journalism professor at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.


You know that four Bush biographers have supposedly committed suicide? Four? One journalist/statistician/actuary wrote a recent article on the probabilities of this happening. He concluded that it was as close to totally impossible as possible.

Peter Grojean mentioned below, son of R. Adm. Charles “Chuck” Grojean from Southeast Missouri and San Antonio, a director of the Nimitz Foundation? He was married in Houston by Louis Zbinden, pastor of FPC, San Antonio and board member with you and Edgar Smith at Austin Seminary. I always wondered why Zbinden was less than cordial, but sitting in SA with Sessions, Revell’s boss, and thinking the Presbyterian church was getting a close examination from one of its own is enough to make anyone’s paranoia level soar. No? It would have paid to have put me on the same page. Not that I’d prefer to be there and that I don’t have sins of my own to deal with. At least then I’d had the freedom to politely walk away and say… “HEY. MORE POWER TO YOU!”

0607364 GROJEAN PETER FRANKLIN M ZAUNBRECHER NANETTE MISS F 28 29 10-25-1979 10-27-1979 461020199 101879 101879
2811 NEWMAN ST HO 2811 NEWMAN ST HO 102579

David L. “Tex” Hill? Chennault’s ace who became the head of the Texas Air National Guard when GWB and Bath were at Ellington Field, the place where Patrick’s body was found? He was an Austin College Graduate in Sherman, TX.. This all makes Peter Brewton’s work (seeing that Pete is also an Austin College Grad, not to mention an award winning Houston Chronicle and Post journalist and now journalism professor at Texas Tech) that much more significant and why his book was the most censored publication in America in 1990.


Claire Chennault was a 32nd degree Mason in League City, TX. His fellow Flying Tiger “ace” was David L “Tex” Hill was the son of Presbyterian missionaries to China, like the Bells, Grahams and Junkins.

Hill became the head of the Texas Air National Guard where both James R Bath and GWB served together at Ellington Field where Patrick’s body was found.

Hill lives in San Antonio on Elizabeth Street near George A Olson, a cousin of Sarah Norris in whose home Patrick attended a party a couple of weeks before his murder. Nearby is the Argyle Dinner Club where Louis Zbinden and others dine with William Sessions, the head of the FBI when Revell was there. Too, too many coincidences.

Another of Chennault’s “aces”, “Hap” Arnold along with Chennault’s commander, General Stilwell, wanted Chennault brought up corruption charges. Instead they made him a general. “Hap” Arnold was hardly a choirboy. This was how the covert operations were funded in China years ago. Nothing changed. It was the same old story with Iran-Contra. Problem is that when you do business in this way, there’s no getting out. Sad, but this is how America’s Military Industrialist Complex works. We will all be judged for it.


David Stitt did the marriage for Richard B Westerfield of 5455 Jackwood to Amelia Norlean Robison. Robert Cizik is a board member of the University of Texas Medical Center, Houston and was CEO of First City Bankshares, now Air Products and Chemicals where L Paul Bremer is also on the board.

You remember Bremer. L. Paul Bremer III was named Presidential Envoy to Iraq on May 6, 2003 and in this capacity was the Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Government.

Cizik is on the board of Temple-Inland with Carlyle Group’s president, Afsaneh Mashayehi Beschloss, and he’s also on the board of Harris Corporation in Melbourne, Florida where the Halliburton/Dresser boat was moored before being brought to Texas…the one Patrick was on the night he died.

Robert Cizik is also on the incorporation records of WINGATE PARTNERS which has a Harris County DBA of 3027 Marina Bay Dr. #110, League City by Southshore Harbor Marina where the Halliburton/Dresser boat was moored that night. Robert Cizik’s kin, Greg Cizik, was a VP with Ed Smith’s Commonwealth Mortgage. SEC records show that Ed and Thomas Smith of Grace Presbyterian have 14% controlling interest of First City. This was my reason for asking Harper if he knew Greg Cizik, being that Harper is now a parish associate pastor at Grace and his son is executive pastor at FPC where Modesett teaches Sunday School. Harper said “no, I’m not acquainted with Cizik,” but that he usually knew the bride’s family. Okay. Let’s follow that line of reasoning and see where it leads:



0595795 WESTERFIELD RICHARD B M ROBISON AMELIA NORLEAN MISS F 21 19 06-01-1979 06-06-1979 460071410 060179 060179 5455 JACKWOOD HO 250 STONEY CRK HO 060179 DAVID L STITT PASTOR

Harris County Marriage Record:

0595795 WESTERFIELD RICHARD B M ROBISON AMELIA NORLEAN MISS F 21 19 06-01-1979 06-06-1979 460071410 060179 060179 5455 JACKWOOD HO 250 STONEY CRK HO 060179 DAVID L STITT PASTOR

5455 Jackwood is the same address for both the Stitt and Harper weddings above. Alan G Robison, Amelia Norlean Robison’s kin has more than a passing interest in street drugs and the policies that effect them (see Drug Policy Forum of Texas below). He was for 20 years the head of the University of Texas Pharmacology Department. Robert Cizik is also on the University of Texas Medical Center Board and according to Houston Chronicle and Post reporter and author of THE MAFIA, CIA and GEORGE BUSH, Austin College graduate and son of Texas Presbyterian minister, Peter Brewton, the MD Anderson Foundation, also in the Texas Medical Center has been a major conduit for CIA funds.

DBA for “DRUG POLICY FORUM OF TEXAS”, Harris County, TX…..

B0195366 DRUG POLICY FORUM OF TEXAS 223990694 12-18-1995 10 1445 LAKESIDE ESTATES #3004 HOUSTON TX 77042



FROM their website:

“The Drug Policy Forum of Texas [DPFT] began with the basic belief that a well informed public will choose rational policies. DPFT was formed because the War On Drugs not only doesn’t work, but is also causing a great deal of unintended damage to society. Most politicians are afraid to discuss alternatives, and the one-sided information given to the public is often distorted or simply wrong.

DPFT members are simply concerned citizens from no particular political or social group, but we are fortunate to include many experts among our leaders and advisors.

Key people:

Co-founder Dr. G. Alan Robison, is a National Academy of Sciences award winning pharmacologist who chaired the department of pharmacology at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston for over 20 years.

Advisors include:

Dr. Bryon Adinoff, Distinguished Professor and Director of the Clinical Center for Addictive Diseases at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas

Dr. Ferad Murad, winner of the Nobel prize for medicine

Dr. Susan Robbins, Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Houston, teacher of a national award winning TV course, “Drugs and Society”

Dr. Malcolm Skolnick, former Professor of Technology and Health Law at the School of Public Health at the University of Texas in Houston

We work closely with many other experts here and around the world.

Our purpose is to increase discussion and implementation of better, evidence based, alternatives that will minimize the damage done by drug abuse and damage caused by the use of thoughtless policies.”

There’s good reason why “most politicians are afraid to talk about alternatives.” Our governmental leaders are involved in it an our church provides the cover. Our church. Yours and mine.

Stone Mortgage, which handled the mortgage on Patrick C Oxford’s (Bracewell & Patterson Law Firm with former Comptroller of the US Currency Robert Logan Clark) purchase of David Sitt’s home in Bellaire, a company for which Patrick worked for only six weeks, was using Gregory L Gregg as treasurer. A Houston attorney, Mr. Gregg is a partner of Houston Attorney Scott Valby….

Scott Valby has connections with Youth For Christ (see Brewton concerning the connection of Youth for Christ and the S&L Scandal). Richard Secord (Iran-Contra figure) is closely tied to Youth For Christ as is Billy Graham who was president of Youth for Christ in 1944 and 1945 (Brewton pp. 273-274), which may help to explain how those close to Iran-Contra are now at the highest levels of the Christianity Today organization, ie., John H “Jack” Modesett. Mr. Gregg has also worked in the Harris County District Attorney’s office where Johnny B Holmes, related to Modesett by marriage, was in charge of the Harris County Crime Lab. You know that Holmes spoke at the Grace Presbyterian Men of the Church dinner meeting in 1989 followed by Mattress Mack of Gallery Furniture.

The deckhand Patrick was to meet after the Clear Lake Christmas Boat Parade had been a manager for Mattress Mack and was now being paid $3500 a month to worked on the Halliburton/Dresser boat which was normally moored in Freeport, TX. after being brought to Texas from Harris Corporations’ home city of Melbourne, Florida.

Moored at the Bridge Harbor Marina at Freeport when it was taken to Clear Lake for the Christmas Boat Parade….a long way to go for a deckhand job to drive from his home north of the Houston Intercontinental Airport and a significantly higher salary than one might expect for a deckhand job. In as much as Brewton and others including Catherine Austin Fitts document the connection between Iran-Contra and the S&L Scandal, you have to follow the builders and mortgage bankers to see the trail. The deckhand’s home was built by Spring 60 LTD which had offices next door to Craig Plumhoff, former Grace Elder whose partner, a Mr. Holladay, like Modesett’s partner, Ed Baker, and like Patrick Carr, supposedly died by burning himself to death in his car…that makes three…Baker, Holladay and Patrick. What a coincidence! The subdivision north of the airport was developed by a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Charles “Chuck” Grojean from my hometown in Missouri. Appointed by GHWB to the Nimitz Foundation in Fredricksburg, TX. the Admiral also developed a trailer park adjacent to Fiesta Texas in San Antonio.

How long my family has been caught up in this sick web is only now coming out, but we’ve been several generations of Presbyterians. Admiral Grojean’s son Peter Grojean has deals in Harris County with the attorney who was working with Dr. Ashraf Moyzayani, the Harris County Medical Examiner in charge of Patrick’s case and whose crime lab is not only in shambles and was overseen by Johnny B Holmes.

The connections of First Presbyterian Church, Houston to Bell, Graham, Junkin and other key Presbyterian families close to David Stitt is well documented. When people say “this is conspiracy theory stuff, I remind you that in the 1950’s the Texas Veterans Land Scandal included over 200 people and one of it key leaders, Bascom Giles, is a member of FPC, Houston.

I know of the Junkin connection to the Graham and Bell families as missionaries to China which was supported by FPC, Houston. These historic connection seems to go back as far as the 1920 and 30’s to the work of Claire Chennault, relative of Sam Houston and from Louisiana who was running drugs for the Nationalist Chinese in the early part of the last century up to and after WWII.

Chennault was pumped by Henry and Claire Booth Luce, Henry also being a son of Presbyterian Missionaries and Luce being a close mentor and friend of William F Buckley whose father was sheriff of the infamous Duval County, TX. next to Jim Wells County where one of the corporate agents for the boat, now living two blocks over from FBI former Counter-Terrorism chief and my parishioner, Oliver “Buck” Revell lives in Rowlett, TX. resided along with Johnny B Holmes’ handpicked replacement in the Harris County DA’s office, Chuck Rosenthall.

Brewton records that Chennault’s Flying Tiger Airlines was supplying air transport for Barry Seal’s operation. That Chennault was trained at Ellington Field near where Patrick’s body was discovered is not, in my opinion, an accident. Neither is the fact that James R Bath, who was identified by the Michael Moore film, Farehheit 911, as a figure that Bush didn’t want to have exposed, owned the fuel concessions at Ellington Field. Nearby is/was Houston Gulf Manor Airport bought by Khalid Bin Mahfouz and Bath for the Bin Laden Family. After Patrick’s murder this airport was dismantled and is currently being sold by Heritage Properties. Parties from the boat were traced to a home next to the Houston Gulf Manor Airport. Up until August, 2000, Robert Cizik, lived directly across the street from the man who handles Halliburton’s KBR pension fund, Fayez Sarofim.

I need to know if the Presbyterian Curries in Texas are related to Lauchlin Currie who was responsible for the covert activities of Louisiana resident, Claire Chenault, whose work in China via the “Flying Tigers” and in Louisiana via “Flying Tiger Airlines” is also documented by Brewton with connections to Barry Seal’s Mena, Arkansas CIA activities. Lauchlin Currie died outside Bogota, Colombia where he was supposedly raising cattle. I have read elsewhere that an attorney with the Rose Law Firm, William Kennedy, was jailed for his role in Seal’s Mena, Arkansas operation. I have previously told of how Patrick was going to Stuttgart Arkansas on the Monday Morning after his death to Wingmead Farms owned by Frank Lyon, the benefactor of Lyon College and the only Coca-Cola distributor in Arkansas. Brewton documents that Coca-Cola and Walter Mischer provided Oliver North his Contra training facility on 700,000 acres in Belize. That Lyon also made a fortune as an RCA distributor via contracts with Walmart (another Presbyterian connection) and that Richard Cizik was the CEO of RCA which also owned most of the major media outlets in this country and which has close ties to Viacom’s Sumner Redstone who just purchased The Houstonian. None of this is coincidental. The Houstonian was not only the address of GHWB while he was in Houston, but has been the home address of a number of other significant and mutually known personalities including the Carollo family. Before it was known as the Carlos Marcello family, the New Orleans family was the Carollo family.

In investigating Pat’s death the Chenault/Chennault name continually comes up and particularly with a Corpus Christi oil pipeline inspection company that flies along the Texas-Mexican border. Some of this may explain why Doug Harper feels that being a pastor is superior to being a prophet, why Billy Graham always addressed citizen’s personal conversion to faith without ever speaking harshly in public about the Military Industrialist Complex behind the Vietnam War or Iran-Contra or now the money-making ventures in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places, and why novelist Pearls S Buck really bolted from the Presbyterian Church after spending a lifetime in China. That Brewton documents the connection of Coca-Cola to Walter Mischer and Coke and Mischer’s connection to Oliver North’s Contra training ground in Belize and that Modesett’s pastor at FPC, Houston moved into Peachtree Presbyterian where Frank Harrington continually touted his connection to the Coca-Cola CEO is also no accident.

I have read that in the province of Haichow, where the Junkins, Bells and Grahams worked as missionaries, that the opium/morphine dealers were using Formosan credentials provided by the Japanese and that these dealers were given Japanese protection. Even after Chennault moved from the US to defend China and his proposed bombing Japan five months before Pearl Harbor….a proposal endorsed by FDR….it has been documented that Chennault continued to run drugs for the Nationalist Chinese to help underwrite his covert activities. Gee. Where have we heard that scheme before?

That’s exactly what Gary Webb uncovered in his work in LA, showing that the crack cocaine epidemic in LA was funded the CIA, leading to John Deutsch’s appearance in LA and for which Webb paid with his life on the anniversary of Patrick’s death.

You know that Deutsch followed his work with the CIA as a board member for Schlulmberger Oil. D


I spoke with Doug Harper on Sunday night, July 17th, 2005. Doug couldn’t remember doing the marriage for Gregory Cizik. He said that normally he’d do the wedding for the bride’s family and not the groom’s. That makes sense, but there does seem to be a pattern with the bride’s family as well, in as much as David Stitt seems to have married another Westerfield at 5455 Jackwood, Houston. Robert M Poteet, your associate, married a Mary Jo Westerfield to Carl T Wimberley, the former Executive Pastor at Modesett’s FPC, Houston. Doug told me that his son is now the Executive Pastor at FPC, Houston. Here are the Harris County marriage records:



0595795 WESTERFIELD RICHARD B M ROBISON AMELIA NORLEAN MISS F 21 19 06-01-1979 06-06-1979 460071410 060179 060179 5455 JACKWOOD HO 250 STONEY CRK HO 060179 DAVID L STITT PASTOR

Now the reason I am concerned about Greg Cizik is that he was a VP with Commonwealth Mortgage which purchased Sessions Mortgage during the S&L Scandal effective hiding Sessions from implication. William Sessions was Buck Revell’s (Revell was FBI General Deputy, head of Counter-Terrorism, point-man for the FBI’s Iran-Contra response along with the CIA’s Thomas Tweeton and member of my Plano Church whose grandson died the morning after Patrick) boss during Iran-Contra.

Cizik has business dealing with USA Environmental Inc., which has business dealings with Hub City Environmental Inc, a company whose owner was on the Dresser/Halliburton boat that night. When brought to Texas the boat was moored in Melbourne, Florida, home of Harris Corporation, a major CIA contractor for which my sister’s sons work/ed. My wife brother had worked for John Mecom, also a known CIA co-conspirator during Iran-Contra along with Modesett, Walter Mischer and Charles W. Duncan…Duncan head of Coca-Cola and a Houston resident with connections to Peachtree Presbyterian, Atlanta (you can read about this in Peter Brewton’s Houston Post and Chronicle articles and in his book about the S&L Scandal).

Greg Cizik has deals with Robert Cizik’s Temple-Inland. On the board of Temple-Inland is the CEO of the Carlyle Group and USA Environmental is a company that removes unspent ordnance from American military war zones in Afhganistan and Iraq. Robert Cizik, now with Air Products and Chemicals for which L Paul Bremmer works, was also CEO of RCA which is VERY significant when combined with Coca-Cola’s connection to covert CIA activities. The only Coca-Cola distributor in Arkansas and also the leading RCA distributor in Arkansas is Jack Lyon.

Patrick Carr was packed and ready to go on a hunting trip with his uncle…the one who worked for Mecom…to Stuttgart, Arkansas on the Monday morning after his murder, December 11, 2000. The place, arranged by his uncle Kevin, was Wingmead Farms, owned by Jack Lyon the benefactor and namesake of Lyon College. Wingmead and other Lyon companies use Rose Law Firm, the firm of the Clintons whose legal advisor, Vince Foster, supposedly committed suicide.

There were two other boys who were murdered when they got too close to the Iran-Contra network. That happened at Mena, Arkansas (GHWB was VP at the time and Clinton was governor) and you can read about these boys on the internet if you’d like. Mena was run by Barry Seal whose biographer, Daniel Hospicker, told me about the connection of Iran-Contra to the Bush and Clinton families, Mecom and the others.

Carl Wimberly has a real estate deal in Houston with Cadillac Devmt Corp which was already turning up in my investigation into Patrick’s death.

File No: J271162 Grantee:WIMBERLEY CARL T JR ETAL Grantor:CADILLAC DEVMT CORP FC: 067820406 Date:19831208 Type:W/D Desc:INSTR Section: Lot: Block: Misc: Vol-Page:

The reason that I need for you to have the Rev. Dr. Doug Harper call me concerning Greg Cizik is that I need the FIRM connection between Greg and Robert Cizik. I know that Greg’s Cizik’s company does work for Temple-Inland, and that Robert Cizik is on the board of Temple-Inland.

Also on the board of Temple-Inland is the CEO of the Carlyle Group, Afsaneh Mashayehi Beschloss. Cizik is also on the board of Harris Industries for which my nephews work/ed. Robert Cizik is now the CEO of Air Products & Chemicals and on that board is L. Paul Bremmer, former head of Counter-Terrorism for the US State Department before being given his assignment in Iraq.

My parishioner, Oliver “Buck” Revell, was head of Counter-Terrorism for the FBI. It was his grandson who died the morning after Patrick in Dallas.

Greg Cizik has an address in Houston of 5455 Jackwood co-owned with Melanie Westerfield.

Douglas M Harper did the wedding for Greg Cizik. David Stitt married Westerfield’s father and Presbyterian minister “Buck” Oliphant did a later marriage for Richard B Westerfield.

0595795 WESTERFIELD RICHARD B M ROBISON AMELIA NORLEAN MISS F 21 19 06-01-1979 06-06-1979 460071410 060179 060179 5455 JACKWOOD HO 250 STONEY CRK HO 060179 DAVID L STITT PASTOR


The Halliburton/Dresser boat Patrick was on in Clear Lake had been in Melbourne, Fl, home of Harris Industries a major CIA contractor. On the boat that night was Rudy Johnson of Hub City Environmental Inc. in Pearland.

Hub City has dealings with a Greg Cizik related company called USA Environmental Inc. which extracts land mines and unspent ordnance in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Patrick’s uncle had worked for known CIA-Iran-Contra asset, John Mecom. For my son to be anywhere near these people put him in extreme danger. That fellow Christians did not tell me of that danger is beyond reason. That I was so naive is my own cross to carry.

David Stitt’s home was sold to Patrick Oxford of Bracewell & Patterson Law Firm and Patrick Oxford used Stone Mortgage Company to fund his purchase. Patrick Carr had worked only six weeks for League City based Stone Mortgage…with no offices near Oxford’s old or new Stitt home.

Bracewell & Patterson is the law firm of the former Comptroller of the US Currency during Iran-Contra. A qui-tam law suit filed by former HUD Undersecretary, Catherine Austin Fitts, has revealed the connection of McClennan County-based First City Financial, J-Hawk and Harbor Mortgage to a pattern of narco-dollar laundering which Fitts said needed the knowledge and compliance of the nations highest banking regulator, the US Comptroller of the Currency. I have already explained the connection of these companies to elders at Grace Presbyterian Church.

The release of evidence in Fitt’s suit in May, 2000 just as the Halliburton/Dresser boat was being put into some kind of covert service in Texas, having been ferried back to Texas from Melbourne, put my son in extreme danger along with Revell’s grandson.

Respected CIA agent, Robert Baer, author of SLEEPING WITH THE DEVIL: HOW AMERICA SOLD ITS SOUL FOR SAUDI OIL, chronicles the relationship between the CIA’s chief spy, Thomas Tweeton and Buck Revell. Both men helped orchestrate the CIA and FBI connection/s to the Iran Contra drugs-for-weapons-for-hostages fiasco.

According to Baer, Tweeton’s son-in-law, Matthew Gannon…also a CIA agent, was on his way back to the USA from the Middle-East on December 21, 1988 to ask the CIA why field agents had NOTHING on the Moslem Brotherhood…the organization which spawned Al Qaeda.

The Brotherhood started in Egypt, ventured through Syria where it was squelched by Assad and ended up in Saudi Arabia where it nurtured by the Saudi Royal Family and used across the Middle-East to do CIA dirty work…a fact known only to the CIA and FBI within the CIA and FBI….which is why those organization are now in an ideological morass.

On December 21, 1988, Gannon boarded Pan Am flight 103 which blew up over Lockerbie Scotland. Buck Revell’s son…the one whose child died the morning after Patrick….was scheduled to fly on Pan Am 103 with Gannon, but changed his flight a few days before the event. Revell was put in charge of the investigation.

I want to get to the bottom (or top) of who in their right minds would kill two boys to cover their tracks in defending democracy around the world. Similar murders took place in Mena, Arkansas near Barry Seal’s Iran-Contra Airport there.

The San Jose Mercury New writer who discovered that our CIA was selling drugs to America’s youth, Gary Webb, died on the anniversary of Patrick’s murder, December 10, 2004…five days after I sent a letter to Presbyterian ministers across the country outlining my discoveries and making the connection between Texas to California via Webb’s story. Ruled a suicide by the California medical examiner, Webb had supposedly shot himself twice in the head. The key witness in Webb’s story, Ricky Ross, was moved from a California prison to one in West Texas.

Doug Harper said to me once “Be a pastor before you become a prophet.” You tell him for me I said, “Yea, but then be a truth-teller…DAMN IT!”

Do I want the investigation into Patrick’s death reopened. OF COURSE. But who in Harris County would do it? The DA, hand picked by Johnny B Holmes whose crime lab is in shambles, Chuck Rosenthal…also from Alice, Texas…home of Hub City Enviromental Inc’s Rudy Johnson’s business partner, Quitman Lindley who lives two blocks over from Revell in Rowlett, Texas ? Plus Holmes is related by marriage to FPC Sunday School teacher and now head of Billy Graham’s Christianity Today Magazine, Jack Modesett, mentioned by Houston Chronicle and Post writer and Texas Texas Journalism Professor, Peter Brewton, as another Iran-Contra CIA asset.

I can’t make this stuff up!


Bank and Market Lootings Using LAND CONS04.Mar.2007 20:26

Judson Withamlink

It’s in the TITLE ABSTRACTS, PLAT DEDICATIONS and TAX ASSESSMENTS associated with the Clinton Land Deals.

Kenneth Starr took a HUGE DIVE because there are THOUSANDS of Crooked Illegal Land Development CONS in Bush’s Texas. IT’s FACT

Whitewater and Castle Grande are amongst THOUSANDS of Bank Looting CONS associated with LAND FRAUD. Ms. Clinton knows she’s a LAWYER and the ROSE LIE FIRM worked for FSLIC and RTC. Read The Following and LEARN FROM IT

Note To Montgomery County Commissioners, DA Mike MacDougal and Marcus Winberry, Nelda Luce Radabaugh Blair, WB Etheridge, Phillip Swisher and LUCY PROCTOR

Hello Houston FBI: Robert L. Vickers, W.G. Horne III, WB Etheridge, Thomas Eikel, Donald Clesson, Harreal Blackshear, Western Bank, Eagle Title Company Conroe, The First American Title Insurance Company, Nelda Luce Radabaugh Blair, Lucey Proctor, William Pack and Hundreds of Thousands even MILLIONS of Americans NOW UNDERSTAND how Houston and Dallas Banks were looted with the assistance of Title Insurance Companies like Hope and Mayes of Conroe Represented. Former US Attorney Toney Canales certainly understands as does Marcus Winberry, Jimmie C Dozier, Jimmie Edwards, Mark White, Jim Mattox, Dan Morales and you know the Commissioners Court of Montgomery County, Bill and Hillary Clinton understand AS DOES Quapaw Title and Ken Starr, oh I almost forgot Katheryn Woolford formerly with RTC / FDIC / FLSIC. now with USAID and BEARING POINT.

” Peddling Texas swampland is just one of the dirty jobs facing the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC), the U.S. agency that opened shop in early August to administer the coup de grace to sick thrifts. The mop-up has landed federal regulators in the same muck that mired the S&L industry: Thousands of white-elephant properties, most located in markets as soft as quicksand. ”

Greetings Arizona and Cochise County:

For a little background first I cut and paste an except from your site:


Every Arizona County and hundreds of thousands of trusting land purchasers were victimized by the rampant land scams of the 1960’s.””

My name is Judson Witham and as you may know I have been working on unraveling the MASSIVE land fruads and Bank – S&L lootings in Texas, Oklahoma, Florida, California, New Mexico, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Utah and even ARIZONA to Hawaii just to name a few States. Oooops I forgot to mention ARKANSAS land of the Madison S&L Job traceable to Bill and Hillary Clinton.

You may find it interesting so I refer you to these links and facts: When the Lincoln Savings and Loan Mess of Charles Cheating was abstracted and researched by FSLIC and RTC investigators it was discovered that he had engaged in widespread speculative Dirt Road and Paper Subdivision activities.

FACT : In taking over Charles Keating’s notorious Lincoln Savings & Loan, the RTC acquired some $1 billion worth of property, including plots for 17 planned communities in Texas, Arizona, Colorado, Florida and Louisiana. One of them is the 20,000-acre Estrella Project in the desert 20 miles southwest of Phoenix. Although Lincoln invested $200 million in preparatory work, only three homesites have been sold. !! That $200 Million was why a PAPER SUBDIVSION can be so LUCRATIVE.

See also

Planning in the Wake of Florida Land Scams Planning in the Wake of Florida Land Scams. by Hubert B. Stroud, Professor of … Considerable attention is apparent in the literature on consumer fraud, … – 73k

AND Last but not leasrt understand that Montgomery County, Texas was exposed in US District Court in Houston for more than 635 paper, dirt road or RED FLAG SUBDIVISIONS by you guessed it YOURS TRULY.

To emphasis my points, when President george W. Bush # 43 was Governor and US Senator John Cornyn was Attorney General many MILLIONS of Trusting Land Purchasers were VICTIMISED by the rampant land scams of the 1960s,70s,80s and 90s IN TEXAS.

Now for my Arizona Freedom Of Information request, and a personal question or two.

Your Official Cochise County Project land Fraud site states that ARIZONA had RAMPANT LAND SCAMS during the 1960s. This is coincidently the same type of matters Mr. Don Bolles was investigating immediately before his MURDER.

ie “and much like”

“Land fraud, bankruptcy, murder, suicide, incarceration and greed surround the history of Cochise College Park subdivision. Located in Cochise County, consisting of 2 phases of 12 units totaling 8,647 lots, it was the worst fraud in the states and possibly the Nation.


What records, newspaper articles, investigation records, notes, memoranda, tapes, photos or films does Cochise County control or possess that reflects the RAMPANT LAND SCAMS of the 1960s ??

Question Two

What records, newspaper articles, investigation records, notes, memoranda, tapes, photos or films does Cochise County control or possess that reflects the names of reporters, witnesses, title abstractors, law enforcement personel, tax assessors or tax collectors, reserachers, authors or individuals, employees of Cochise County included that have knowlege of the RAMPANT LAND SCAMS OF THE 1960s or information or records of any kind associated with your claims at


Question Three

What records, newspaper articles, investigation records, notes, memoranda, tapes, photos or films does Cochise County control or possess that reflects the names of FEDERAL AGENTS or US SECRET SERVICE, US TREASURY, or US ATTORNEY GENERAL INVESTIGATORS, or reporters, witnesses, title abstractors, law enforcement personel, tax assessors or tax collectors, reserachers, authors or individuals, employees of Cochise County included that have knowlege of the RAMPANT LAND SCAMS OF THE 1960s or information or records of any kind associated with your claims at


I would kindly ask that any information or records your Office or that Cochise County, AZ and including the same catelgories of information that The State of Arizona reveal and produce the same records and information, that is responsive to my request for information. I ask that it all be catalogged, listed and it’s existance revealed in accordance with Arizona Open Records or Freedom Of Information Laws.

Thank You Very Much

Judson Witham

Some additional excerpts and back ground for your enjoyment !

Houston Post Head:

SUN, 3/30/1986
WILLIAM PACK, Post Reporter Post photos by Jerry Click

Dreams of paradise have been shattered for scores of Montgomery County landowners who face a seemingly never-ending struggle to obtain various public services.

“You really feel like you’re being abused,” said Tommy Gage.

Gage moved to a southwest Montgomery County subdivision four years ago only to find the roads there so bad that school buses were not allowed on them.

Vicki Burleigh, who lives at a mobile home subdivision in the southeast part of the county, said many residents have moved out because of poor roads, bad drainage, troublesome septic tank systems and uncaring neighbors who litter their property with junk.

“My husband doesn’t want to leave,” Burleigh said. “We had to clear the land and put in a lot of work out here. But I’d almost rather take a loss and start over somewhere else than get this place paid for in a few years and be living in a slum.”

Donna Meek, one of Burleigh’s neighbors in Pinewood Village, said her family’s move five years ago was part of a dream to get “farther out and have some room to breathe.”

“We love it out here,” Meek said. “We don’t want to move, but we may be forced to.”

Landowners with similar problems voice their complaints at almost every meeting of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court.

“We all pay county taxes and yet the county won’t do anything to keep the roads from tearing up my truck,” Gage contended.

But it appears the county’s attitude is changing.

Officials say the problems many of the landowners describe are the result of unscrupulous developers who never recorded plans for their subdivisions with the county.

“They would buy up some acreage, mark off a road, grade it and put a little gravel on it and say the county will take care of it,” said Precinct 1 Commissioner Oliver Hance. County Judge Jimmie C. Edwards III described such developers as “shysters who came in, did the deal, made some money and hooked it.”

By failing to have the development recorded, developers avoided requirements in effect since 1967 that stipulate, among other things, how roads should be built, what type of drainage studies should be done and when septic tanks are allowed.

Officials contend they have no authority to make improvements in unrecorded subdivisions where county building specifications have been ignored. They also concede there are more than 600 such subdivisions in the county.

“Can you believe that number?” asked the county’s new health director, Dr. Sydney Garrett.

He said drainage, sewage and septic tank problems can generate health hazards that should be addressed in any proposed remedy.

The focus of the county’s initial response will be poor roads, since officials said that is the problem most often identified by landowners.

Gage and other landowners said the roads have deteriorated despite their efforts to maintain them.

“My brother and I had a tractor and we tried to keep the roads up as best we could until times got hard and we had to sell the tractor,” said Johnny Thibodeaux, who lives in an unrecorded subdivision north of Splendora. “But grading the road doesn’t take care of the holes or clean out the ditches.”

If the roads are bad enough, buses, postal officials and at times garbage haulers will not come down them, landowners said.

“We’re on our fourth garbage hauler,” said Burleigh. “I assume they quit coming because of the roads . . . I imagine one of the reasons family doesn’t come visit anymore is because the roads are so bad.” Hance said landowners are perplexed when they learn the county can’t improve their substandard roads, noting that commissioners often have yielded to political pressure and provided such improvements.

“Commissioners did that in the past when the county had 40,000 people,” observed Precinct 2 Commissioner Carol Shelton. “But now, the county has grown so much and funding is so limited, you don’t see it anymore.”

Shelton said commissioners do not have enough money to keep existing county roads in proper shape. Adding improvement and maintenance costs on roads from unrecorded subdivisions would “penalize the rest of the citizens for the benefit of these few taxpayers,” Shelton said.

Others contend the county simply does not have enough money to improve all of the roads in unrecorded subdivisions, now estimated to cover some 450 miles.

Edwards said he is most interested in finding those developers “who misled their investors” by telling them roads and other facilities would be upgraded.

He contended the worst violations occurred in the 1960s and 1970s when the area economy was robust and land was cheap.

W.B. Etheridge, a real estate attorney in Conroe who has developed small subdivisions, said some landowners were victimized during those years by high- pressure salespeople who “made promises but never followed up on them.”

“That should never happen,” Etheridge said.

He and other developers contended, however, that in recent years, subdivision regulations have been honored.

It is primarily moderate-income families that were victimized by developers who never recorded their subdivisions, officials reported. They say solutions will take a long time to accomplish.

Inadequately Developed Issues

The trial attorney for Du ROI stated that the corporation was R.V. King’s and that King owned its stock. The defendant’s attorney stated that there were 500 unrecorded subdivisions in Montgomery County and that people who lived in some of these unrecorded subdivisions wanted better roads and maintenance.

Note :The case Below Is But A DROP IN THE BUCKET involved in the Land Fraud, Financial Fraud and PUBLIC CORRUPTION associated with the Land Fraud and Banking and S&L DEBACLES in TEXAS
698 S.W.2d 178

Court of Appeals of Texas,
La COUR Du ROI, INC., Appellant and Cross-Appellee,
MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas, Appellee and Cross-Appellant.

No. 09 84 288 CV.

Aug. 29, 1985.
Rehearing Denied Sept. 18, 1985.


Tex.App. Beaumont 1985.
La Cour Du Roi, Inc. v. Montgomery County
698 S.W.2d 178

“The individual is handicapped by coming face to face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists”.
J. Edgar Hoover, former head of the FBI

Du ROI urged that its rights had been violated, arguing that it had been singled out for unfair treatment. We think these issues were not adequately developed. They may be important as equitable defenses since the county sought equitable relief. The doctrine of balancing the equities and the doctrine of clean hands may become relevant. There was more than a scintilla of evidence to show that the father of a county-wide elected official was alleged to have developed an unrecorded subdivision as well as the husband of the secretary of the elected official. Further, reviewing the whole posture of the case, we perceive that the City of Conroe was a proper party to the litigation and may well have been a necessary party. R.V. King may be a necessary party also.

An order had been entered in this appeal concerning the problem of overburdening this record. That order was improvidently granted. It is set aside. We have examined the entire record.

Date: SAT 12/23/1989
Section: A
Page: 17
Edition: 2 STAR
$14 million frozen in lawsuit alleging mortgage fraud

A federal judge here Friday agreed to freeze up to $14 million in South Texas bank deposits after a New York lender alleged that officials of five companies in Corpus Christi and Houston , including two lawyers, engaged in mortgage fraud.

A lawsuit by Pioneer Commercial Funding Corp. says the defendants created bogus documents to obtain funds from Pioneer, ostensibly to be reloaned to buyers of homes in Houston ‘s Runningbrook subdivision and elsewhere. Instead, it says, the money was stolen.

The lawsuit accuses the defendants of racketeering, which allows the court to award triple damages if proven. Pioneer is seeking $14 million in actual damages and $42 million in punitive damages.

U.S. District Judge Kenneth Hoyt signed an order taking control of the deposits in two accounts held in the Bank of Robstown by Mortgage CreditCorp Inc. of Corpus Christi .

Pioneer’s attorney Steven Zager said he does not know how much money is in the accounts. He said Pioneer will go after any funds held by any of the defendants, but knows only of the two accounts in Robstown.

The list of 19 defendants is headed by William J. Cartwright Sr. of Corpus Christi , named as president and majority owner of Mortgage CreditCorp and two other companies there, The Cartwright Group Inc. and First State Investors Inc.

Other defendants in Corpus Christi are his sons, William Jr. and Robert H. Cartwright, and Veronica J. Cartwright, who are officers and stockholders in the three companies; Rosmare Saldivar and Melvin Smoots, officers of Mortgage CreditCorp and The Cartwright Group Inc.; William H. Whittle, an attorney and stockholder in Mortgage CreditCorp; and James P. Page. The companies are also defendants.

The Houston defendants are John S. Pipkin, an officer and majority stockholder in Beau-Bay Development Corp. here; his brother Roger W. Pipkin III and his son Roger W. Pipkin IV, both officers and stockholders in the company; and three persons employed by C&P Realty here, attorney Robert L. Vickers, real estate appraiser Steven F. Thomae and Kelly Alan Wohlers.

Pioneer, a “warehouse lender,” advances funds to mortgage companies, which lend them in turn to home buyers. To obtain funds, a mortgage company sends Pioneer a package that includes the home buyer’s credit application, promissory note, deed of trust, property appraisal, title policy commitment and proof of insurance.

The lawsuit says Pioneer agreed to provide Mortgage CreditCorp up to $35 million for such loans, but sometime in 1989, the defendants began creating packages including “fictitious deeds of trust, counterfeit title commitments, fraudulent credit applications, phony appraisals and bogus insurance policies.’ The lawsuit says William J. Cartwright Sr. and others conspired to buy more than 90 vacant lots, most of them in Runningbrook, at foreclosure sales at bargain prices, then transferred the titles to Beau-Bay and C&P Realty.

Fraudulent packages for a number of fictitious buyers were prepared by other defendants, who presented them to Pioneer.

“Neither the houses nor the underlying mortgage transactions actually existed,” the lawsuit says. It says Pioneer lost at least $14 million as a result.

Zager said that attorney Whittle’s signature is on the deeds of trust and that attorney Vickers’ is on the title policy commitments.

The latter were on Stewart Title letterhead, but a Stewart official said the company did not provide them, Zager said. The title tracking numbers are assigned to Associated Title, but that company also disclaimed them, Zager said.

An affidavit made Tuesday by Wohlers’ fiancee, Leslie Ann Lehman, says she signed false loan documents for four homes at his request after he told her “it was all right.’ “I have never seen the property, did not purchase the property and these documents are false,” her affidavit says.

Page said he worked for Mortgage Credit for about six months and “warehoused mortgage loans with Pioneer,” but knows nothing about the alleged scheme. John S. Pipkin declined to comment until he sees the lawsuit, as did former U.S. Attorney Tony Canales of Corpus Christi, who represents The Cartwright Group. The other defendants could not be reached for comment.

 http://www.canaless DynamicAttorneys .shtml?wldpid= 2473629_1&mailpagename= ObfuscatedForm&p=yes
Past Employment Positions
Southern District of Texas , U.S. Attorney, 1977 – 1980

Date: FRI 12/29/1989
Section: A
Page: 28
Edition: 2 STAR
Funds at more banks frozen in fraud case

A federal judge here Thursday froze accounts in four more banks at the request of attorneys in a lawsuit alleging a $14 million mortgage fraud scheme by companies and at least two lawyers in Houston and Corpus Christi .

U.S. District Judge Norman Black issued sealed orders to freeze defendants’ accounts in Memorial Bank and Texas Guaranty National Bank in Houston , Mason Road Bank in Katy and First National Bank Gulfway in Corpus Christi .

U.S. District Judge Kenneth Hoyt last Friday authorized freezing two accounts in the Bank of Robstown near Corpus Christi on request of the plaintiff, Pioneer Commercial Funding Corp., a New York “warehouse lender” that advances money to mortgage companies for home loans.

The defendants allegedly prepared fraudulent loan application packages involving vacant lots in Houston ‘s Runningbrook subdivision and elsewhere, claiming they had 20-year-old homes on them.

Pioneer’s attorney, Steve Zager, said Thursday’s orders were sought from Black because Hoyt, whose court has the case, was out of town.

The defendant companies allegedly obtained loans from Pioneer by submitting bogus documents, including credit applications, promissory notes, deeds of trust, property appraisals, title policy commitments and proof of insurance. At least three potential witnesses have said they falsified such documents for a small fee or at a boyfriend’s request, Zager said.

The list of 19 defendants is headed by William J. Cartwright Sr. of Corpus Christi , named in the lawsuit as president and majority owner of Mortgage CreditCorp and two other companies there, The Cartwright Group Inc. and First State Investors Inc.

Other defendants from Corpus Christi are Cartwright’s sons, William Jr. and Robert H. Cartwright, and Veronica J. Cartwright, who are officers and stockholders in the three companies; Rosmare Saldivar and Melvin Smoots, officers of Mortgage CreditCorp and The Cartwright Group Inc.; William H. Whittle, an attorney and stockholder in Mortgage CreditCorp; and James P. Page. The companies are also defendants.

The Houston defendants are John S. Pipkin, an officer and majority stockholder in Beau-Bay Development Corp. here; his brother Roger W. Pipkin III and his son Roger W. Pipkin IV, both officers and stockholders in the company; and three persons employed by C&P Realty here, attorney Robert L. Vickers, real estate appraiser Steven F. Thomae and Kelly Alan Wohlers.

The lawsuit accuses the defendants of racketeering, which allows the court to award triple damages if proven. Pioneer is seeking $14 million in actual damages and $42 million in punitive damages.

Zager said federal marshals served Black’s freeze orders Thursday after wire transfers were traced to the Houston area accounts from the Robstown accounts of Mortgage CreditCorp, which Hoyt had frozen. The latter turned out to contain about $300,000. Up to $14 million may be frozen if found.

Zager said the Mason Road account here is in the name of Vickers, who denies any connection with it. Zager said another attorney here withdrew about $10,000 from the account on Wednesday, emptying it.

Zager said Vickers, 58, was sentenced to five years in prison on Oct. 12, 1988, in Arizona for money laundering and conducting an illegal enterprise.

Investigator Clyde Wilson said he reached Vickers by phone in a Yuma , Ariz. , prison, and Vickers told him his name is being used by others, but he is not involved in the scheme. Zager said Vickers’signature, provided by his wife here, does not match those on the allegedly bogus documents.

Zager said Robert Cartwright was sentenced in 1979 to 12 years in prison for misapplying funds, conspiracy and making false loan applications, but has been released.

Zager said First State Investors has accounts at Gulfway and Mason Road banks; C&P Realty has accounts at Gulfway , Texas Guaranty and Memorial; and Wohlers’ company, Inland Towing and Transportation, has accounts at Memorial.

“The individual is handicapped by coming face to face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists”.
J. Edgar Hoover, former head of the FBI

Austin Texas May 19th 1931

Texas Legislature – House Bill 473 – By Wenert et al
Passed 31 ayes to O nays
HB 473 – Section 3 see former Texas Penal Code 1137h

The fact that many parties have delivered to purchasers deeds and contracts to real estate described according to some subdivision or resubdivision when in fact no such subdivision or resubdivision was of record then or thereafter resulting in great confusion of titles and fraud to purchasers, and the fact that such practices will continue unless prohibited, creates an emergency and an imperative public necessity that the Constitutional Rule requiring bills to be read on three several days in each House be suspended, and said rule is hereby suspended, and that this Act shall be in effect from and after its paaasge, and it is so enacted.

Witnessed by Edgar Witt President of the Senate

Sent to Enrolling Clerk May 19th 1931

contracts to real estate unambiguously and in plain English means ANY and ALL or Every Contract

The Cardinal Rule Of Statutory Interpretation applies and If Properly Parsed and ALL words within the enactment are given the ordinary meaning

Texas Penal Code 1137h and Article 6626c et al APPLY to ALL CONTRACTS TO REAL ESTATE


Article 6626c, V.T.C.S. The provision provides:

Section 1. No party shall file for record or have recorded in the official records in the County Clerk’s office any map or plat of a subdivision or resubdivision of real estate without first securing approval therefor as may be provided by law, and no party so subdividing or resubdividing any real estate shall use the subdivision’ s or resubdivision’ s description in any deed of conveyance or contract of sale delivered to a purchaser unless and until the map and plat of such subdivision or resubdivision shall have been duly authorized as aforesaid and such map and plat thereof has actually been filed for record with the Clerk of the County Court of the county in which the real estate is situated.

Sec. 2. Any party violating any provision of Section 1 of this Act shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be fined in a sum not less than Ten Dollars ($10.00) nor more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00), or confined in the county jail not exceeding ninety (90) days, or both such fine and imprisonment, and each act of violation shall constitute a separate offense, and in addition to the above penalties, any violation of the provisions of Section 1 of this Act shall constitute prima facie evidence of an attempt to defraud. (Emphasis added).
This article was transferred from article 1137h of Vernon’s Penal Code by authority of section 5 of Acts 1973, 63rd Leg., ch. 399, at 995, enacting the new Penal Code.

A person may be prosecuted under article 6626c, V.T.C.S., in two separate circumstances. First, for the act of recording, and secondly, for the act of selling property making a reference to an unrecorded map or plat. In Attorney General Opinion M-390 (1969), this office held that the second circumstance makes a misdemeanor offense of a conveyance by a subdivider where the property description depends for its location upon reference to a subdivision plat which has not been duly authorized as provided by law and/or has not been filed for record. Use of the subdivision description is not cured by additional metes and bounds descriptions, which in themselves must rely upon the unrecorded plat for location of the property on the ground. (Emphasis added).

Former Texas Penal Code 1137h was the Codification of HB 473 of May 19th 1931 the Texas Legislature was reacting to the MASSIVE Bank and S&L Lootings and Failures associated with MASSIVE TEXAS Land FRAUDS of the 1920s. (These Massive Land Schemes also were rampant in FLORIDA during the same period. The FHLBB and Later HUD enacted the Land Sales Registration Act Texas AG Greg Abbott READ SECTION 3 of HB 473

See Ol “Kat” Woolford at:

SEE  http://www.geocitie The Great Texas Bank Job IT’s NO JOKE

Kat Woolford (BBA ’72) of Baton Rouge, La., has done a little bit of everything since graduation: exercised race horses, worked for the Liquidation Division of the FDIC, and served as an advisor to the Bank of Latvia and the National Bank of Romania.


 http://www.uga. edu/~gm/1298/ Notes2.html

 http://www.usaid. gov/locations/ europe_eurasia/ mt/images/ fsnl.pdf# search=’Woolford ,%20FDIC’

 http://www.findarti p/articles/ mi_m1218/ is_n23_v107/ ai_n12428575

For sale by owner: junk real estate
US News & World Report, Dec 11, 1989 by Monroe W. Karmin

For the grab bag of less luxurious listings that constitute the bulk of the RTC portfolio – foreclosed homes, motels, shopping malls, office and apartment buildings, industrial parks and vacant land – the market seems even more forbidding. Still, plucky sales agents are rising to the challenge. “The roof dips a tudge on one side, the porch has a hole in it and there are termites,” admits Kat Woolford, who is hawking a $7,500, two-bedroom shack on a third of an acre in Tomball, Tex., north of Houston. “But it’s a cute hideaway.”

Arizona real estate for sale: For sale by owner: junk real estate

For sale by owner: Junk real estate

Just as Americans have grown used to the idea of junk bonds, a new financial bugaboo looms on the horizon: Junk real estate. Set in desirable communities, many of the properties now being jettisoned by insolvent savings and loan institutions seem to be paradise. But like the 9-acre swath of Long Island beachfront off the Texas Gulf Coast, spectacular vistas rarely live up to a developer’s dreams. Over half of the $400,000 Laguna Madre parcel lies underwater. There is no sewer hookup and no sea wall, and there are high fees to maintain a private bridge that connects the island with Port Isabel on the mainland. “It could all go underwater in a hurricane,” admits a spokesman for La Hacienda Savings Association in San Antonio, which holds the property.

Peddling Texas swampland is just one of the dirty jobs facing the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC), the U.S. agency that opened shop in early August to administer the coup de grace to sick thrifts. The mop-up has landed federal regulators in the same muck that mired the S&L industry: Thousands of white-elephant properties, most located in markets as soft as quicksand. The collection includes such exotica as a $900,000 equestrian center (reduced from $1.5 million) north of San Antonio, the $25 million StarPass golf-course community in Tucson, a historic bank building in Houston, a boarded-up lumberyard surrounded by wetlands near Tampa, Fla., 77 condominium units on the tip of Long Island, N.Y., and a 55 percent stake in the opulent $200 million Phoenician Resort in Scottsdale, Ariz. All told, RTC officials estimate they now must dispose of close to $16 billion worth of real estate currently on the books of 268 failed thrifts in 33 states.

Fool’s gold. Most of the properties will fetch pennies on the dollar’s worth of book value – if they can be unloaded at all. The 6-acre McCune Mansion in Paradise Valley outside of Phoenix is typical of the RTC’s daunting task. Built in the 1960s by oil tycoon Walker McCune for his young bride, the 53,000-square- foot house boasts numerous kitchens, a ballroom with an $80,000 chandelier, an Olympic-sized swimming pool and ice-skating rink, a theater, a darkroom, its own beauty salon, a 14-car garage and a guest house. Mrs. McCune refused to move in, and the place saw a succession of owners, most recently Gordon Hall, cofounder of the Nautilus fitness company. RTC inherited the property when it took over the bankrupt Southwest Savings & Loan Association earlier this year. “There’s not a great market for 53,000-square- foot houses,” says Jack Lake, the RTC agent charged with finding a buyer.

For the grab bag of less luxurious listings that constitute the bulk of the RTC portfolio – foreclosed homes, motels, shopping malls, office and apartment buildings, industrial parks and vacant land – the market seems even more forbidding. Still, plucky sales agents are rising to the challenge. “The roof dips a tudge on one side, the porch has a hole in it and there are termites,” admits Kat Woolford, who is hawking a $7,500, two-bedroom shack on a third of an acre in Tomball, Tex., north of Houston. “But it’s a cute hideaway.”

The heat is on for the RTC to speed up its fire sale. The agency has three years to gather up all the nation’s ailing S&L’s and seven years to dispose of acquired properties. Ideally, the feds would like to get rid of their sick thrifts as whole entities, bad real-estate investments and all. But most investors are interested only in the best assets, saddling the government with the white elephants. The longer the RTC hangs on to the losers, the higher the taxpayers’ tab, already estimated at $166 billion.

But the disposal process is being hindered by the fact that no one knows how much sour real estate the RTC will have to offer. An initial inventory of properties currently under its wing will not be completed until the end of this month. And that is just the beginning. Leonard Sahling, real-estate analyst for Merrill Lynch in New York, figures the government will wind up with at least a $50 billion portfolio when it actually takes over all the thrifts that now are technically insolvent. Others put the total at $100 billion as more S&L’s go belly up in the years ahead.

Nor can the RTC simply dump its holdings on the market wholesale. “Everything we have is for sale,” says Thomas Horton, the agency’s deputy director, “but everything is not for sale at any price.” The government is barred by law from selling its assets for less than 95 percent of fair market value in the six depressed states of the Southwest – Texas, Oklahoma, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado and Louisiana – where about two thirds of the property is located. Still, “fair market value” is in the eye of the appraiser; Horton admits that properties that cannot be sold at 5 percent discounts will be “re-evaluated” until buyers are found.

The most promising properties in the RTC’s bag, mainly apartment and office buildings whose rents cover expenses, are sure to be snapped up by insurance companies, pension funds and other “deep pocket” investors. But such quality properties are in the minority. The largest proportion of the government’s holdings consists of vacant land, a tough commodity to peddle in the Southwest and other overbuilt areas.

In taking over Charles Keating’s notorious Lincoln Savings & Loan, the RTC acquired some $1 billion worth of property, including plots for 17 planned communities in Texas, Arizona, Colorado, Florida and Louisiana. One of them is the 20,000-acre Estrella Project in the desert 20 miles southwest of Phoenix. Although Lincoln invested $200 million in preparatory work, only three homesites have been sold. Now the RTC’s agent, Mark Randall, is trying to figure out what to do with the property. “Vacant real estate has not fared well in the Arizona economy,” he observes sadly.

Other parcels may not draw buyers – no matter how attractive the price. “They’ll have to be plowed under to grow soybeans,” predicts Michael Aronstein, president of Comstock Partners, a New York investment firm. But while developers may sniff at many of the government’s offerings, interest is cropping up in some surprising quarters. Conservationists already are picking through the pile of unwanted real estate for wildlife preserves and other ecologically valuable property. The Florida Keys Land & Sea Trust, for instance, paid $1.35 million for Crane Point Hammock, a 63 1/2-acre estate that was going to be turned into a resort before its developers went broke. Now, it is slated to become a nature center.

PHOTO : Museum piece. The Phoenician Resort in

PHOTO : Picture perfect. Houston’s historic Franklin National Bank will appear in “Dark Angel”

PHOTO : Scottsdale, Ariz., comes decorated with millions of dollars’ worth of sculpture

PHOTO : Castle keep. The McCune mansion near Phoenix has a 14-car garage, an ice rink and a ballroom with an $80,000 chandelier

COPYRIGHT 1989 All rights reserved.
COPYRIGHT 2005 Gale Group

SEE Planning In The Wake Of Floridas Land Scams

Planning in the Wake of Florida Land Scams
by Hubert B. Stroud, Professor of Geography, Arkansas State University
P.O. Box 2410, State University, AR 72467
and William M. Spikowski, Spikowski Planning Associates
1617 Hendry Street, Suite 416, Fort Myers, FL 33901

Date: SUN 09/24/1989
Section: C
Page: 1
Edition: 2 STAR
Road woes continue/Neighborho od battles county over upkeep

GRANGERLAND – The way Linda Collins sees it, road service in the Pioneer Trails subdivision should be a simple matter of the county accepting responsibility.

Collins and other residents of the subdivision near Grangerland pay taxes to Montgomery County for services that include road maintenance. Therefore, the county owes it to the residents to keep the roads – some of which turn to mush in rain – maintained and passable, Collins says.
“It’s as simple as that,” she asserts.

But that, say county officials, is an oversimplification.

Pioneer Trails is one of the county’s 338 “red flag” subdivisions – unrecorded developments that have substandard roads – still entangled in a complex web.

The web was largely weaved during booming economic times, from the late 1960s through the early 1980s, when the county’s population more than doubled. The county in those years had neither the manpower, nor admittedly always the willingness, to ensure that rural subdivisions were recorded and the roads built up to county standards.

And buyers seduced by the area’s beautiful country environment weren’t inclined to read the fine print on sales contracts to learn for sure if the county or the developer was responsible for long-term road maintenance.

The legacy of the boom is most evident on a Pioneer Trails road named Willowisp, which in one secluded area has deteriorated into more of a grassy trail than a roadway.

It was during the county’s boom-and-build frenzy that Collins, 44, and husband, Raymond, bought property on Springfield Road in Pioneer Trails. By 1979, roads in the subdivision had deteriorated to such an extent that Mrs. Collins and residents stormed the county barn of Precinct 4 Commissioner Albert “Bull” Sallas, demanding repairs.

Sallas acquiesced, patching Springfield Road in spite of the fact, he says, that it wasn’t really the county’s responsibility.

Yet Collins has preserved a newspaper clipping of the encounter at the county barn, where Sallas was quoted as telling the residents, “If you marry a woman with a child, you accept responsibility for the child.”

Collins sees the clipping as an admission from Sallas that he’s responsible for the roads, wryly noting that “the commissioner hasn’t taken very good care of the children.”

Sallas says he never promised the residents he’d maintain all of Pioneer Trails, despite Collins’ claim to the contrary. In addition, he notes that the offices of the district and county attorneys in recent years have tied his hands in legal knots, precluding him from working on roads that aren’t rightfully county property.

“They can send me to the penitentiary if I just go out and fix any old road,” he says.

Sallas and Commissioners Court in 1982 accepted a portion of Springfield Road into its maintenance system, leaving it with a fresh, black-topped surface that’s been well maintained. That portion was accepted largely because it was already in “reasonable compliance” with county standards, Assistant County Attorney Marc Winberry says.

The portion that fronts the Collins property was not in such good shape and consequently was not accepted, the attorney says.

After years of steady deterioration, despite the frequent patchwork done by Sallas, the stretch of road fronting the Collins house became so shoddy – and so hard on a mail carrier’s Jeep – that the postal service last month threatened to cut off delivery to Collins and 50 other residents whose mailboxes line the street.

Outraged by the potential loss of mail service, Collins protested to county officials, who recommended that she petition for the road to be accepted by prescription – a sort of squatter’s rights process that allows a private road to become public after 10 years of continuous public use.

Commissioners Court approved the petition earlier this month and Sallas has since blacktopped the remainder of Springfield Road.

But Collins, though appreciative of the smooth new pavement in front of her house, is unappeased. The county, she says, still owes it to residents of the subdivision’ s back areas – where Willowisp and two other roads are in worse shape than Springfield ever was – to upgrade those streets and keep them maintained, too.

Sallas and the other county officials say they’ll do whatever is economically feasible to upgrade the roads to some degree of higher standards, even though it could be an expensive undertaking.
“The remaining roads have no base and no ditches and would require a considerable amount of work,” County Engineer Don Blanton recently told commissioners.
County officials say the residents may have to consider an agreement whereby the residents would pitch in money or materials and the county would provide the equipment and labor for the road improvements. Such agreements are frequently negotiated with residents of red flag subdivisions, Winberry says.

But Collins isn’t amenable such a proposal.

“That would be double taxation,” she says. “It’s the principle of the thing. These people pay road taxes just like everybody else and are not getting anything for it. They deserve roads that are just as decent as the ones that taxpayers in the rest of the subdivision get.”

Blanton, however, notes that county taxes go to other services besides road maintenance.
“Taxes go for law enforcement, to the health department and a lot of things. Road maintenance is one thing, but that’s actually a fairly small percentage of total taxes,” he says. “If you choose to live inside a city in Montgomery County, you don’t get the road maintenance for your county tax dollars.
“I’m not trying to minimize the fact that those people (in Pioneer Trails) have a road problem. They have a problem we can relate to because we see it every day. The problem goes a lot further than just this single subdivision. ”

Sallas says the Pioneer Trails developer, Kap, Inc., of Houston, should be held liable for improving the roads if at all possible, he says.

Winberry says the developer already has denied liability for the subdivision, but that the county hasn’t ruled out the possibility of suing the company.

The county attorney’s office in recent years has aggressively pursued developers of red flag subdivisions through litigation, forcing many to bring substandard streets up to snuff. The office last year alone recovered $100,000 from developers in agreements reached outside of litigation, Winberry says.

Until an agreement can be hashed out in the Pioneer Trails case, some of the residents there will have to live with the bumps and muddy messes that leave their vehicles in disrepair.

“Pioneer Trails is probably one of the worst examples of an unrecorded subdivision, ” Winberry says. “But it’s by no means unique.”FAVORITE S&L FELONIES

(FORTUNE Magazine)

By Mark D. Fefer, Wilton Woods, John Labate, Jung Ah Pak, | Andrew Erdman, Terence P. Pare, Sandra L. Kirsch, Alison L. Sprout, Joel Dreyfuss, Jaclyn Fierman.November 5, 1990

(FORTUNE Magazine) – Misapplication of funds:Obtaining funds for a given purpose, then using them for another not sanctioned by the lender. Borrower A, who was lent $100,000 to build an apartment complex, uses the money instead to pay defaulted interest on another loan.

Land flips:The fraudulent inflation of a property’s value through multiple sales. Party A buys a property for $100,000, then sells it to confederate B for $400,000. B sells to confederate C for $700,000. Confederate D then goes to the thrift and says he wants to buy this much-sought-after property for its most recent appraised value. The thrift approves the loan; the felons divide the proceeds. The lender and appraiser may or may not be in on the deal.

Nominee loans:By law, an S&L can lend no more than 15% of its capital to a single borrower. Party A borrows the maximum, then tells shill B to borrow an equal amount from the same institution. B gives his money to A. Bankers sometimes play along, as a way of circumventing the lending cap. The term also applies when bankers use shills to borrow for their own accounts.

Check kiting:The classic original white-collar con. The perpetrator, with $10,000 in account X, draws a check on X for $20,000, depositing it in account Y, whose balance previously was zero. He then draws a check on Y for $10,000, depositing that amount in account X. Float, the time required for checks to clear, makes the game possible — so long as the money keeps moving.

Kickbacks:    Payment of anything of value to a person in exchange for a service. Party A seeks a $100,000 loan. Banker B reviews A’s application and says: ”You must be kidding.” A shows just how serious he is by offering to give B 10% of the loan, if approved. The payment is disguised as a ”servicing fee,” ”consulting fee,” or some such.

The items in the following list were largely reported by Mark D. Fefer, with assistance from Wilton Woods, John Labate, Jung Ah Pak, Andrew Erdman, Terence P. Pare, Sandra L. Kirsch, and Alison L. Sprout. They were written by Fefer, Joel Dreyfuss, and Jaclyn Fierman.

Otha B. Chandler Jr. 50, a senior loan officer at Savers Federal in Little Rock, Arkansas, ignored regulations that cap loans to a single borrower and handed out $20 million — 55% of his thrift’s portfolio — to just two Little Rock developers. Chandler, who goes by ”Buddy,” broke the law again by covering up his folly. The loans, which financed a failed Mississippi condo project and the purchase of a private jet, among other things, all went bust. Prison sentence: four years.

Robert Luera 48, proprietor of a Mexican restaurant in Redding, California, exaggerated his income to get a $135,000 home loan. A good sport, he had the FBI investigator in for a meal after his case closed. One year probation.

Janis Lee 48, a clerk in charge of handling new customer accounts at Surety Federal Savings Bank in Vallejo, California, skimmed some $100,000 for herself from dormant accounts. She is awaiting sentence.

Luann Price Brent Price Luann, 42, a loan officer at Eureka Federal S&L in Eureka, California, and her husband, Brent, 43, kited $2 million in checks between Eureka and a Utah bank. Four years each.

Roderick D. Reed 42, president of FirstSouth Savings in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, used the accounting equivalent of steroids to beef up his thrift’s balance sheet. He recorded as loans $8.5 million given a Dallas developer that should have been treated as investments, since that money carried no recourse to the borrower. But by concealing this arrangement from examiners and auditors, Reed was able to book fees and interest that nearly doubled FirstSouth’s income. His alleged co-conspirator, FirstSouth Chief Executive Howard J. Wiechern Jr., is awaiting trial. Reed got 2 1/2 years.

Robert Mikkelsen 53, executive vice president of Baldwin County S&L in Robertsdale, Alabama, pushed through a $1.5 million loan for three business associates, supposedly to develop a marina on a piece of swamp known as the Quarantine Property. But as Mikkelsen knew, this boggy site — where turn-of-the-century passenger ships let off people with infectious diseases — was worthless. The loan went bust. The three were acquitted. Mikkelsen got one year probation.

John Latham | 36, president of Madison Guaranty in Little Rock, Arkansas, tried to hide from bank examiners a $500,000 nonrecourse insider loan that had been made to take a warehouse off Madison’s books. Six months.

David Mason III 59, a director at the Bank of Amadore in Northern California, kited checks between his thrift and Washington Savings in Jackson, California. He paid back the $450,000 that the Jackson thrift lost. On probation.

Martin R. Mortimer and Ance Marlin Sutton Mortimer, 38, executive loan officer at Pima S&L in Tucson, Arizona, was nailed for accepting a $12,000 thank-you check from a Denver loan broker. But federal investigators estimate that, altogether, Mortimer made some $30 million in fraudulent loans at Pima. Sutton, 50, a California real estate developer, also slipped Mortimer a $10,000 ”gift” while seeking Pima loans. Sutton later claimed that his bribe had been a loan. Each got five years in prison.

Robert M. Snyder 31, an agent for Advanced Auto Leasing of Scottsdale, Arizona, helped 18 clearly deadbeat customers get loans by filing phony information with various S&Ls. Snyder is awaiting sentence.

Janet McKinzie 41 (right), executive assistant to the chairman of North America S&L of Santa Ana, California, was the ringleader in a scam that cost her thrift $16 million. Working with David Morgan, 53, a real estate investor, she set up a fake escrow account and then submitted phony invoices to get funds for her own use. Secretaries Victoria Walker, 48, and Kathleen Taormina, 33, provided the paper trail. When caught, McKinzie was ordered to pay back $13,445,369, which matched the $10 million plus interest she had collected from the insurance policy of Duayne Christensen, the thrift’s chairman. Christensen, who colluded with her, died before charges could be pressed. McKinzie got 20 years; Morgan, one year and a day. Walker, who sang to the feds, got only 90 days; Taormina, community service and a $5,000 fine.

Stephen Croff 42, chief loan officer at Gold River Savings in Carmichael, California, invented four fictitious borrowers and lent himself $198,000 to open a pizza parlor. Croff, who paid the thrift back, got probation.

David Holder 37, managed to cash $168,000 in bad checks at American Savings in Sacramento, California, before striking out on his third visit. While awaiting sentence, he was picked up again for a similar offense. One year. | John Steven Bracy 44, president of Unifirst Federal in Trumann, Arkansas, loaned two business associates $500,000 more than they needed. All $500,000 soon found its way back into Bracy’s pocket. Three years.

Lori Ann Schaefer 26, a loan officer at American Savings in Stockton, California, made secret loans to herself — each large enough to pay off the last. When she lost her nerve, she had dug a $128,000 hole. She got 15 months.

Harlan Wolfe 61, a real estate appraiser, overvalued a $225,000 house, got a loan, and funneled the extra $500,000 to a cash-starved fireworks company. The lender, a California thrift, recovered its money. Awaiting sentence.

Robert Joseph Hyde 61, an insurance agent, stole the savings of an old woman whose money he was managing. Hyde forged her signature on a check for $168,000 at Sacramento Savings & Loan in Woodland, California, and disappeared in October 1989. Last June, Hyde was featured on the Fox Television program America’s Most Wanted. He was picked up days later in Oklahoma City, where he had been working at an employment agency under an alias. Not yet sentenced.

Steven Curran 42, worked hard to keep his boat business afloat. Among other things, he kited checks and got loans under false pretenses. He bilked Westwood (California) Thrift & Loan of $150,000 and awaits sentence.

Michael S. Moers Arthur M. Pastel Moers, 39, chairman of Brookside S&L of Pasadena, California, and Pastel, 64, the vice chairman, sold property to their thrift through a front man. The real estate ranged from a 322-unit apartment complex in San Antonio to property in Nevada. In one case, Moers and Pastel altered board minutes to hide their involvement. Moers also secretly collected commissions for land deals from another California thrift. Both men are awaiting sentencing.

Richard J. Mariucci 32, branch manager of Gibraltar Federal in San Francisco, oversaw some very large deposits. He used his position to help himself to $3.4 million and spent it on gambling and raising racehorses. Twenty-seven months.

Hans J. Leuschner 51, vice president of Adobe Savings in Concord, California, kited checks between Adobe and another Concord bank to keep his restaurant business running. Five years probation.

Anthony M. Essex 33, former VP and loan administrator of Founders S&L in Los Angeles, vastly + overstated his income to obtain a $121,500 mortgage. He also helped business associate Janet Caldwell, 52, fake her application and approved a loan of $50,000 for her. The thrift later managed to recover its loan loss plus interest by selling Essex’s house. Six months in prison, 640 hours of community service, and $8,000 in restitution for him. Caldwell got three years probation and 400 hours of community service.

Henry Schneider Steven Smith Walter Vladovich Vladovich, 56, owner of a video store in Riverside, California, defrauded Westlake Thrift & Loan of $4 million. He and his salesmen — Jerry Tulak, 30, George Louyza Sr., 53, and George Louyza Jr., 26 — gave away equipment to recruit straw borrowers and kept the money from the loans for themselves. Smith, the thrift’s president, was in on the scam. In a separate scheme, Vladovich bribed Schneider, VP at First United Federal of San Francisco, to win approval for $556,269 in nominee loans. The money flowed into Vladovich’s pockets. Four years and a $50,000 fine for him; two years and $20,000 for Smith. Schneider got three years and has to repay $32,000. The Louyzas got 90 days and $10,000 fines. Tulak got six months and $20,000.

Daniel Burkhart and Gina Loren Loren, 54, an investment manager, Burkhart, 43, a stockbroker, and Charles Lusin, 57, an attorney, conned California thrifts, individuals, and an order of nuns out of $4.1 million. Loren promised victims their money would be held in a trust secured by U.S. Treasury notes. Instead, it went into a margin account at Burkhart’s brokerage and was spent on luxury cars and a $1.6 million home in Orange County. Loren got six years; Lusin, five; Burkhart, four.

Walter Nicholas 36, of Chico, California’s American Savings, rerouted elderly investors’ nest eggs to an unsuccessful Nevada City business venture, then tried to recover by buying hundreds of state lottery tickets. Twenty months.

Hermit Butler 52, took part in a massive money-laundering scheme. He withdrew $285,000 in cashier’s checks from Citicorp S&L of Torrance, California, knowing that the money wasn’t there. Not yet sentenced.

Marcel Cordi 48, a developer, hid behind 38 straw buyers to get $2.6 million in home loans from Sacramento’s Great Western Savings. But the thrift lost nothing, thanks to the frenzied 1988 housing market. Six months.

Thomas Brian Carter 37, used a falsified tax return that exaggerated his income to secure a $190,000 residential loan from Great Western Savings of Redding, California. He is currently appealing his four-month prison sentence.

Michael S. Scherzer 46, a California devel oper, borrowed $2.6 million from E.F. Hutton and three thrifts, ostensibly for real estate deals. He spent the money instead on polo ponies and expensive cars. Sixteen years.

Mariana Abella Emelita Carino Bruce Li Abella, 40, Carino, 40, and Li, 31, worked at Grand Wilshire Group of Glendora, California, an umbrella organization for car dealerships and auto- financing companies that catered mostly to Filipino immigrants in the Los Angeles area. They joined co-workers Erlinda Relosa, 43, Ramon Relosa, 44, Evangeline Zapido, 43, Francisco Villasenior, 54, and Greg Mangalindan, 30, in a complex scheme to misrepresent auto loans and falsify credit records in loans that Grand Wilshire sold to various thrifts and banks. Imperial Savings Association of San Diego, one of the many victims of Grand Wilshire, took a $50 million hit out of a total of $130 million lost by S&Ls, banks, and investors. The eight are awaiting sentence.

Daniel W. Dierdorff 54, CEO of Sun Savings in San Diego, issued bank checks to himself under a fictitious name. Dierdorff (that’s his lawyer on the left) created a secret account under yet another name into which he deposited some $200,000 of unknown origin. At sentencing, the judge took into account other incidents of Dierdorff’s ”misconduct” that were not charged but were ”found to be substantiated” and that prosecutors say resulted in a loss to Sun Savings of some $13 million. Dierdorff was sentenced to six years in prison.

Peter Frumenti Ted Mussacchio Mussacchio (left), 56, president of Columbus Marin S&L in San Marin, California, lied to his board about a loan he gave to his friend, Frumenti, 64, a contractor. Both got probation.

John L. Molinaro and Donald P. Mangano Sr. Molinaro, 49, chairman of Ramona S&L in Orange, California, and Mangano, 53, ex-business manager of singer Jose Feliciano, used 25% of the S&L’s assets to build a 180-unit condo in Palm Springs. When only seven units sold, they found straw men to borrow $30 million to buy the condos and sign them over to Mangano. The bank lost all $30 million. Both men are responsible for restoring $6.7 million. Molinaro, 12 years in prison; Mangano, 15 years.

David Butler 46, was chairman and president of Bell Savings & Loan of San Mateo, California. He helped an associate, who was not convicted, get a $3 million loan for a real estate deal in which Butler had an interest. Two years.

Jerry F. Waddell 51, vice president of Southern Florida S&L in Sarasota, used fictitious names to loan himself $300,000 for a house in ritzy Longboat Key. Ordered to provide full restitution, he has so far paid $100. Six months.

Kipi Elaine Martin 39, took $48,729 in loans from two Florida S&Ls and a bank by faking identities and filling out various phony documents. Martin was ordered to make restitution and sentenced to six years.

Joseph Harding 59, and fellow salesmen Herman Dennis, 48, and Abraham Hobson III, 42, recruited friends as straw buyers of time-share condos in St. Petersburg, Florida. Two thrifts took big hits on the loans. The three got probation.

David Kelly Brewster 48, used phantom shares of stock as collateral for $550,000 in loans from Amerifirst Bank, West Palm Beach, Florida. He was ordered to pay back $60,015. He got 15 months and three years supervised release.

Jay and Leif Soderling Jay (left), 31, and brother Leif, 36, formerly the two top officers at Golden Pacific Savings & Loan in Santa Rosa, California, pleaded guilty in 1987 to misapplying the funds of their failed thrift and were ordered to pay several million dollars in restitution. Instead, while on probation after a year in prison, the Soderlings used funds from a promissory note that had come due to go on a $500,000 spending spree. The second time around, the judge slapped them with six years each.

Robert M. Pitts 49, owner of Pitt Stop service stations in New Haven, Connecticut, kited checks between two savings and loan accounts. He ultimately stuck Connecticut Savings with a $475,000 loss. Not yet sentenced.

David A. Feldman and Kenneth Rogers, both 51, George Charles Ash, 46, of the National Mortgage Equity Corp., and Mary Brown, 57, a Bank of America branch officer in Los Angeles, sold $144 million of risky mortgage-backed certificates to 20 financial institutions. They included City Federal S&L of Birmingham, Alabama, and Umpqua S&L of Roseborg, Oregon. As trustee, Bank of America lost $95 million. Feldman, 15 years; Ash, two years; Brown, five years probation; Rogers is awaiting sentence.

Otto E. Joyner 48, a manager with Collective Federal in Egg Harbor, New Jersey, certified that work was completed on a Florida condo the thrift financed. The builder went bust, but Collective recouped. Joyner: three years.

Ronald Jacoby Simon Abelson Daniel Jessup Jacoby, 47, a former S&L president, Abelson, 33, and Jessup, 39, set up a straw mortgage scheme to get loans for condominiums from First Federal Savings and Loan Bank of Newton, Kansas. Jacoby must pay back $35,000 and serve 15 months in prison; Abelson must pay $20,000 and serve five years probation; and Jessup must pay $20,000 and serve five years probation. Abelson and Jessup must also serve 800 hours of community service.

William J. Hortman 52, president of First Federal Savings in Americus, Georgia, used a nominee loan from another Georgia thrift to buy a Florida condo unit from his own bank at an insider price. Three years probation.

Richard P. Erickson 37, owner of Vermilion Contracting, enticed homeowners to finance improvements — and make extra bucks — by applying for loans to cover the exaggerated cost of work he did on their homes. An Illinois thrift lost $261,000 on defaults. Erickson got one year. Other Vermilion employees — Douglas Macklin, 47, Lloyd Lucas, 40, Louis Meier, 53, Donald Poggendorf, 52, Gary Smith, 42, and Sandra McDougal, 32 — got sentences ranging from 240 days in prison to three years probation.

Edgar A. Vales 59, a construction contractor, lied about his outstanding obligations to qualify for a $43,000 loan from Liberty Federal of New Port Richey, Florida. He promised to pay back $15,000. Awaits sentencing.

James Reagin 55, majority owner of McRea Inc., a real estate development company in Dallas, pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud including schemes to raise money through a land flip and fraudulent loans. His co-conspirators included Gary Spaniak and Norbert Murray, partners in a shopping center development company; Timothy Heuer, owner of First Savings of South Beloit, Illinois; and Alan Kirchner, president of the Bank of Alma in Alma, Wisconsin. All five men are awaiting sentence.

Vickie Pace John Tucker Pace, 41, and Tucker, 31, used names of creditworthy — but dead — people to get loans for buyers of their mobile homes. Several Georgia institutions lost a total of $120,000. Two years each.

Sherilane Sears 29, branch manager at First Federal in Indianapolis, used the convenience of automated teller machines to withdraw $27,000 from dormant customer accounts. She got five years probation.

Mary Feezel 47, assistant treasurer at Elgin Federal Financial Center in Elgin, Illinois, used a computer to embezzle $597,657. She bought two cars, took vacations, and paid for her kids’ wedding receptions. Three years.

John R. Forbes 50 (left), real estate developer and former Florida state legislator, got a $750,000 loan from First Federal of Jacksonville for a 10-unit condo project. When construction costs mounted, he, architect Harvey M. Manss, 43, and contractor Michael W. Miller, 44, reduced spending — they cut out swimming pools and downgraded appliances — without telling the thrift. First Federal got stiffed. Six months for Forbes and Manss; three years probation for Miller.

Terry Stough and his wife, Nancy, lured buyers to their condo with promises to refund down payments. The condo went bust. California Federal of Marietta, Georgia, and others lost a total of $1 million. Two years probation.

Peyton Johnson 48, a salesman, inflated the purchase price of two rental properties and filed false credit information to get $301,500 in loans. He stung Citicorp Savings of Florida in St. Petersburg and a Tampa thrift. Awaits sentencing.

Richard Keane 30, a developer, submitted false preconstruction sales contracts so he could draw on hundreds of thousands of dollars in loans from American Pioneer Savings in Stuart, Florida. Fifteen months.

Levon Dempsey Jr. 36, controller at Permanent Federal in Evansville, Indiana, laundered $81,000 of the thrift’s money through a friend’s account into his own. Said he: ”I needed it to support my suburban lifestyle.” One year.

Jon V. Karas 46, fraudulently borrowed $100,000 from eight Illinois banks and thrift institutions. He was ordered to pay $90,000 in restitution and was sentenced to two months in prison plus five years probation.

Bruce Narbe 38, got $700,000 from Ameriana Savings in Greenfield, Indiana, for his golf cart store, then used the money to pay off old debts. When default came, there % were no carts to grab. Six months in a halfway house.

Oscar Tharp and John O’Donnell Tharp (left), 41, head of First Mutual Savings in Pensacola, Florida, and executive VP O’Donnell (right), 42, took 1% to 1.5% kickbacks on some $90 million in loans they made through brokers Porter Spangler, 49, and Larry Morris, 56, to developers such as Robert Hayden, 53. The loans, which were for condo projects and rehabs in Atlanta, all went bad. Tharp and O’Donnell got 12 years; Spangler only 90 days. Hayden and Morris got probation.

Arthur Kick 63, was president of North Chicago Federal Savings & Loan. He was nabbed by the government for misappropriating loans totaling $1,218,460. Kick made full restitution and was sentenced to three years probation.

Renato F. Duarte 27, was an employee of Citicorp Savings in Chicago. He used unauthorized ATM cards to raid customer accounts of amounts totaling $119,000. Duarte was sentenced to five months in prison.

Richard Kukielski 51, was president of West Town Savings & Loan Association in Cicero, Illinois. In a sleight of hand reminiscent of Cicero’s mobster past, Kukielski tried to walk with a cool million. Awaits sentencing.

Morris McCleary Jr. 49, president of Home Plan Savings in Johnston, Iowa, converted $1.95 million of his customers’ money, much of it held in jumbo certificates of deposit, to his personal use. He gambled it away on sports. Ultimately, he turned himself in. Says the prosecuting attorney: ”Maybe McCleary’s conscience got the best of him. That happens now and then.” He was sentenced to 30 months in prison and 135 hours of community service, plus full restitution.

Fred L. Langford 64, CEO of Palmetto Federal in Palmetto, Florida, specialized in sham transactions that kept his money-losing thrift looking profitable quarter after quarter. Typically, he would pretend to sell Palmetto’s interest in real estate projects at premium prices while secretly providing all the money for the deals to the buyers. When Goldome Savings of Buffalo, New York, bought out Langford and other Palmetto shareholders in 1983, Goldome took a bath. Three years.

Paul Chainey Jr. and Walter Judd Kassuba Kassuba, 56, a Houston developer, started borrowing from First Federal of Beloit, Kansas, in the early Eighties. Chainey, 46, who headed up Texas lending at the thrift, took kickbacks on the loans. While the loans were made ! for real estate deals, Kassuba shuttled some of the money elsewhere. Part went for making a movie in Hungary — yet to be released. All of Chainey and Kassuba’s joint deals flopped. Kassuba got six months in jail. Chainey got two years.

Malcolm Crow Robert Farmigoni Crow, 40, senior VP at First Financial in Lutcher, Louisiana, arranged for some $10 million in loans to real estate broker Seaborn R. Wicker, 57, all of which defaulted. Wicker, in turn, provided Crow with a Lincoln Continental, a condo, and at least $25,000. Nearly broke now, Crow is doing five years probation; Wicker is appealing his conviction and three-year sentence. Farmigoni (above), 54, took over Crow’s job after he left to work for the FSLIC. He then supplied Loretta Lustig, 54, with $5 million in unauthorized letters of credit, which she used to get real estate loans. She slipped Farmigoni $50,000 in return. The FSLIC finally forced First Financial to merge with another thrift in 1987. Farmigoni and Lustig each got three years.

David H. Stewart 40, a real estate developer with a previous mail fraud conviction, obtained $52,000 in loans from Capital Union Savings of Baton Rouge with false financial information. Stewart was sentenced to ten years.

James D. Hague a director of Liberty Federal in Leesville, Louisiana, sold the thrift to buy his Wichita Falls, Texas, shopping center for 200,000 shares of Liberty stock. He presented a jumbo appraisal but failed to mention that the center was not meeting its debt service. Shortly after Hague became Liberty’s 86% shareholder, management announced a dividend that netted him just shy of $1 million. Hague, not yet sentenced, is cooperating with federal investigators.

James Hershberger 59 (with wife, Sally), a prominent Kansas oil man, once planned to run for governor of his home state. But last February he was found guilty on 25 counts of fraud. Among the victims was Fidelity Savings of Wichita, bilked out of a $600,000 loan because Hershberger lied about his net worth. An accomplished track-and-field man, Hershberger appeared on a Wheaties box in 1986. He got nine years and seven months. Dyrk J. Dahl, financial VP at Hershberger’s firm, executed his schemes and got two years.

William Smith Jr. headed a unit of First Federal of Alexandria, Louisiana. He pocketed fees on mortgages he never made. Thrifts that lent construction money on the basis of his promises lost $1 million. Four years.

Ralph A. Hosch 46, president of Audubon Federal in New Orleans, greased the skids for a $12 million loan. In gratitude, loan broker John E. Hodges, 48, wired him $95,000. Hosch got eight years; Hodges, four months. Ronald P. Slepian, 58, an attorney and broker, participated in a land flip that sent the price of some Alabama acreage soaring from $500,000 to $1.5 million. Crescent Federal of New Orleans lent $1 million on the property, and the participants divvied the dough. Slepian got two years.

Louis J. Sider Jr. 43, mortgage broker, defrauded Elmwood Federal in Harahan, Louisiana, by selling off mortgages and pocketing the money. He created some 50 bogus notes to conceal the sales. Twenty-seven months.

Peggy Byrn 47, got her employer, Kentucky’s London Federal, to pick up the tab when used- car dealer Leon Chambers, 56, her then-husband, bought 18 vehicles at an auction. Byrn got one year; Chambers, five.

Leonard Villines 39, secretary and treasurer at Madisonville Building & Loan in Madisonville, Kentucky, used a $15,000 CD as loan collateral twice. He forged a copy to dupe his own thrift. Not yet sentenced.

George Bonfanti and Gerald Fackrell In 1984 Fackrell, 44 (left), and Bonfanti, 45, borrowed $20 million from Sunbelt Federal Savings of Baton Rouge to build a local apartment complex and a six-story office building. The projects were never completed, although the borrowers lied about the progress to the thrift and drew up a phony lease agreement. They also fabricated construction fees. Bonfanti and Fackrell eventually defaulted; the loss to Sunbelt Federal topped $12 million. Bonfanti was sentenced to five years in prison. Fackrell got six.

Linda Powers, Michael Jimison Powers, 38, an employee of Northeast Savings in Stoughton, Massachusetts, used her desktop computer to transfer nearly $300,000 into her own account. She paid back 80% but still got a year in prison and two years probation. In another Massachusetts case, Jimison, 33, kited checks totaling some $37,000 that crash-landed at Ipswich Savings. When the dust settled, the bank was out a few grand, and he was in the cooler for 30 months.

Jack Lee Odom Michael R. Snyder Mary Jo Lickiss Odom, 50, president of Sioux Valley Savings in Cherokee, Iowa, siphoned off at least $1 million of the thrift’s fees to his own account and took kickbacks from Colorado developers. He also set up a slush fund used to shore up bad loans when thrift examiners came calling. Odom got six years. Snyder, 36, the thrift’s vice president, pleaded guilty to pocketing a $7,000 mortgage insurance check, then helped federal prosecutors nail Odom. His reward: a sentence of 45 days. Lickiss, 41, Sioux Valley’s secretary and treasurer, altered the minutes of the board of directors’ meetings at Odom’s behest to show that the directors approved loans they had in fact never heard of. Lickiss got 80 days.

Vincent Crupi, Cynthia Lawrenson, Valerie Rydell, Peter Savard These loan originators, 30, 32, 27, and 30, respectively, worked at ComFed Savings Bank in Lowell, Massachusetts. They boosted commissions $200,000 by approving loans to unqualified borrowers and by other schemes. Rydell changed a one to a seven on an applicant’s income statement. He got two years probation. Savard got 30 days in jail, $17,000 in fines and restitution. The others await sentencing.

Ronald Anzivino, Carmen Guarnera, Joseph Motroni Motroni, 42, vice president at First American Bank for Savings in Boston, took kickbacks on loans funneled into the bank by Guarnera, 52. For fees of $1,000 and up, which he split with Guarnera, Motroni lent to the uncreditworthy. One repeat customer was Ford dealer Anzivino, 46, who borrowed for himself and unqualified car buyers. Anzivino got ten months in prison. Motroni, 18 months; Guarnera, 24 months.

Henry Leo Ewald Entrepreneur Ewald, 48, forged his way to a $6.5 million mortgage from First Federal of Pontiac, Michigan, on an apartment building he didn’t own. He did meet interest payments. Thirty-seven months.

Kent Higdon C.W. Jackson Higdon, 38, vice president at First Southern Savings in Pascagoula, Mississippi, misstated collateral on loans to Jackson. Higdon awaits sentencing. Jackson got probation.

George McLemore 40, a customer at Eastover Bank for Savings in Petal, Mississippi, kited checks to the tune of $173,542. The judge decided to give the highflying McLemore four months in prison.

Rebecca Killen 48, assistant manager at Unifirst Bank for Savings in Philadelphia, Mississippi, kited $80,000 of checks among 17 customer accounts, forging signatures as she went. Sentenced to nine months in jail.

Megan McDonald Lee Welch Welch and wife McDonald, both 26, used phony documents to apply for $6,045,878 in loans from dozens of banks and thrifts. Welch got 6 1/2 years; Mcdonald, six months.

Edward Dacy James Porter Julian Seidel First Maryland Savings & Loan President Seidel, 55 (above), senior vice president Porter, 43, and outside counsel Dacy, 52, cost taxpayers some $60 million by approving risky commercial loans and failing to submit them for regulatory review. When the bank faced a net-worth crunch, the three sold millions in First Maryland debentures and lent investors the money to buy them. Seidel got 12 years; Porter, seven years; Dacy, 18 months.

Neal Dellocono Robert Fuhrman There was a whole lot of trouble at River City Federal in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. President Dellocono, 50 (right), couldn’t lure buyers for condos he owned, so he required no down payments and River City lent them the full purchase price. In a separate case, Fuhrman, 44, a developer, borrowed $400,000 for a real estate project. He spent the money elsewhere. Dellocono, privy to his plans, pocketed $104,000 in kickbacks. Dellocono got four years; Fuhrman, three.

Clinton Mayes Jr. 39, manager of State Mutual Federal Savings & Loan Association in Jackson, Mississippi, pretended to make loans to customers while taking the money — a total of $134,000 — for himself. One year in prison.

Linda Shunk Philip Shunk Mrs. Shunk, 40, president of Republic Bank for Savings in Jackson, Mississippi, and her mate, 39, the ex-president, made unauthorized loans. Loss: $72 million. Await sentencing.

Donald Snede 40, CFO of Midwest Federal in Minneapolis, one of five indicted officials at Midwest, admitted he doctored the books, enabling Midwest to sell debentures when it was virtually insolvent. Awaits sentencing.

Sharon Newbill 54, a vice president of First City Federal Savings & Loan in Lucedale, Mississippi, acquired $19,000 in new bills by embezzling from First City. Newbill was sentenced to a crisp three years probation.

Sandra L. Payne 31, a vault teller, helped herself to over $100,000 in cash from Blue Valley Federal in Raytown, Missouri. Her fatal error: taking a vacation, which is when banks typically audit their tellers. Five months.

Janice Miller Timm Miller * Timm, who worked at an S&L outside Reno, Nevada, and wife Janice, who toiled in a nearby bank, wrote each other phony checks, pocketing $120,000. Six months for him; she got probation.

Estela Plaza Alfonso Tardy Plaza, a loan clerk at Washington Savings in Hoboken, New Jersey, and realtor Tardy, 33, made off with $2.9 million in loan checks. Tardy to be sentenced; Plaza on probation.

James W. Burge 40, vice president and manager of the consumer loan department at Magnolia Federal Savings & Loan in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, stole some $33,000 from the thrift. His sentence: 1 1/2 years in the slammer.

Richard D. Hollon 41, a bookkeeper at Investors Federal in Chillicothe, Missouri, made 64 transfers of thrift money to his personal accounts over a year and a half. He was caught, like Payne, while on vacation. Ten months.

Larry Kopp Stuart Sherer Kopp, 45, a New Jersey developer, had employee Sherer forge leases and rent rolls to secure a $14 million loan on a mall from Ensign Federal in New York City. Both await sentencing.

Anthony Smith a borrower at Chatham Savings & Loan Association in Chatham, New Jersey, kited checks totaling $342,000. This highflier was brought down with a sentence of four years probation and a $10,000 fine.

Alice Skidmore 39, assistant branch manager at Nassau S&L in New Jersey, made almost 50 loans to herself in the names of customers with inactive accounts. Mounting interest payments finally did her in. One year.

George Morse president of Ramsey’s S&L in New Jersey, pleaded guilty to issuing an $18,000 bank check in a customer’s name and cashing it for himself. Morse also embezzled an additional $100,000. Two years.

Eugene R. Unger 63, vice president, Fidelity Mutual in Westmont, New Jersey, bilked his thrift of some $6 million over 16 years. He covered his tracks by altering records and creating phony accounts. Awaiting sentence.

Bruce M. Bloom 44, CFO of a New Jersey textile firm, got a $52 million loan by overstating his accounts receivable. The company went bust, and Citizens Savings of Providence, Rhode Island, was a victim. To be sentenced.

Vladimir Kushner 38, a New York City meat and poultry wholesaler, dipped into the passbook account of an infirm neighbor and turned the money into gold coins, which he ) had mailed to himself. Kushner was sentenced to 2 1/2 years.

Judy P. Crawford vice president of operations at Home Federal of Kings Mountain, North Carolina, created a false loan worth $263,350.35 and disbursed the money to her own and family accounts. Fifteen months.

Richard Paul Tan 44, stole blank checks from two investment banks where he worked as cashier and deposited $430,000 in New York thrifts. Arrested while applying for a job at Shearson Lehman, he’s in jail awaiting sentence.

Cel Celaj 27, altered a certified check for $230 to read $230,000 and used it as a down payment on his $810,000 home. A loan officer at Dime Savings gave Celaj a mortgage for the balance. Sentence: two years.

Carl Cardascia Ronald Martorelli Michael Rapp Cardascia, president of Flushing Federal in New York, and Martorelli, an assistant vice president, loaned $5 million to World Wide Ventures, a holding company, in exchange for some of its stock. World Wide said it planned to develop land in the Pocono Mountains into Jilly’s Resorts, named for Frank Sinatra crony Jilly Rizzo (bottom), a major World Wide shareholder. In exchange for the loan, World Wide gave 100,000 shares to Cardascia’s wife. Rapp, meanwhile, funneled millions in brokered deposits to Flushing Federal in violation of Federal Home Loan Bank Board restrictions. Cardascia, two years; Rapp, two to five. Others convicted include Lorenzo Formato (top, right), president of World Wide, five years; Anthony Delvecchio, Gabriel Peluso, and Rizzo, all World Wide shareholders, who await sentencing; chairman George Livieratos (top, left), probation; treasurer Donald Sheppard and director Mark Bateman await sentencing; nominee borrowers Anthony Maggaro, one year, Frank Nigrelli, probation, William Smith, probation, Lionel Reifler, awaits sentencing.

David A. Friedmann 45, owner and CEO of Savings One in Gahanna, Ohio, pushed through a $1 million loan to a shady Miami Beach developer. Five days later, $145,000 of the loan found its way back to Friedmann. Yet to be sentenced.

Charles J. Bazarian Jr. 54, chairman of CB Financial Corp. in Oklahoma City, borrowed $6 million from Consolidated Savings Bank of Irvine, California, and pledged as collateral $11 million in investor notes he knew were bad. His schemes also involved Wilshire Investment, which offered real estate tax shelters, and American Diversified Savings Bank of Costa Mesa, California. Consolidated lost at least $9.5 million. Sentenced to four years in prison.

Rebecca L. Luker 50, a real estate agent, falsified collateral to borrow $10,000 from New Mexico Federal in Santa Fe. Says U.S. attorney William Lutz: ”She spent the money, and there is little to show for it.” Four years probation.

Frances K. Crooks 40, sales officer at Buckeye Federal S&L in Columbus, Ohio, siphoned away some $103,000 of the thrift’s funds. Defense lawyers claimed that she was suffering ”excessive stress.” Six months.

Elizabeth James Helen Radovic Bulgarian immigrants Radovic, 66, and daughter Elizabeth, 38, used rubber checks written on various thrifts to buy luxury goods such as fur coats and jewelry. These were delivered by mail to their apartment in New York City. James was arrested while out window-shopping on Fifth Avenue. Each got two years in prison. In the future, they can apply for credit only with the permission of their probation officer.

Jacqueline Harris Gary H. Lewis Harris, 25, vault attendant at Central Federal in New York, and Lewis, 25, were caught in New Jersey with the contents of a safe deposit box. Eighteen months for her; 366 days for him.

Carol Lee Grimm purchasing agent for Perpetual Federal in Washington, D.C., bought $60,000 worth of office supplies from a New York vendor for $250,000 and got $15,000 in kickbacks. She also got two years probation.

John Czas 42, manager of a New York City branch of First Federal of Rochester, stole $307,172 from long-term CDs, shifting money in and out of accounts to avoid suspicion. He was sentenced to two years in jail.

Frederick L. Johnson impersonated his boss and cashed his $104,000 certificate of deposit at Bowery Savings Bank in New York City. Johnson was sentenced to six months in prison, followed by six months at a halfway house.

Carlos R. Rivera 52, befriended a rich old man with an account at First Nationwide in New York City. Rivera began doing the man’s banking for him, and when he passed on, Rivera continued to avail himself of the deceased’s account. There was a significant amount left for him — $300,000 — since the man had not executed a will. Rivera came into the bank once or twice a week for 18 months before bank officials got suspicious. Arrested while on his way to Honolulu. Sentence: one year in jail.

James Carr Carmen Clair Carr and his girlfriend Clair stole $128,798 in checks from the mail and paid holders of accounts at Dayton thrifts and banks to cash them. They are now awaiting their sentences.

Ronald Koos Thomas Nevis Brian Olsvick State Federal in Corvallis, Oregon, wanted to sell an abandoned Air Force base it owned in New Mexico. Olsvick, a State Federal loan officer, lent California real estate man Nevis $12 million to buy the base — plus $16 million for other purposes. Nominee borrowers were employed to disguise the fact that State Federal was exceeding loan limits to a single individual. With Nevis nearly broke, State Federal lent him even more in an effort to keep him from defaulting. Ultimately, the thrift collapsed. Olsvick got a year; Nevis, two; Koos, the thrift’s attorney, was sentenced to 1 1/2 years. Nominee borrower Ronald Campbell got two years. Six months each for fellow nominees Jack Franks, Mitchell Brown, and Albert Yarbrow.

Kenneth Derryberry 38, former vice president at Leader Federal Bank for Savings in Memphis, forged $201,931 in checks and deposited them in phony accounts. Internal security caught him. Slated to be sentenced on November 2.

Richard L. McCall 51, president of a chocolate company, borrowed $1 million from thrifts and banks by overstating net worth. Willamette S&L of Portland, Oregon, lost $195,000. McCall’s just deserts: six months.

Laura Stawinski 32, former accounting supervisor with Spring Hill Savings & Loan in Pittsburgh, took $91,471.57 from customer accounts. She returned the dough before her indictment. Three years probation.

Charles B. Madding 32, VP and branch manager of Fidelity Federal Savings of Claremore, Oklahoma, embezzled from the thrift by creating $100,000 in fictitious loans. Five years probation and restitution of $75,000.

Earl E. Meyer 46, president and director of Investors Federal of El Reno, Oklahoma, obtained money through nominee loans. He was sentenced to 1 1/2 years in prison and five years probation. Restitution, $644,000.

Robert McMillan 47, branch manager at First Federal S&L of Pittsburgh, created a $46,000 phony account. Got 30 days at Goodwill community treatment center and home detention. The feds are appealing for more.

Fred Comunale 42, is the former president of Ellwood Federal Savings & Loan, which is in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania. He rubber-stamped $40,000 in loans to himself for which he did not qualify. Yet to be sentenced.

Edward Jolly Jr. assistant regional vice president and consumer loan manager at First Federal S&L in Spartanburg, South Carolina, purloined some $4.5 million of the thrift’s funds by filing fictitious loan applications. Ironically called ”Rock” (”If you looked up Caspar Milquetoast in the dictionary you’d see Jolly’s picture there,” says the prosecuting attorney), Jolly tested his nerves by playing the futures market with the stolen money. He lost everything. Two years and nine months.

Anthony DiGeronimo, George Shipman, William Walsh III Shipman, 49, a 25% stockholder in Victor Federal of Muskogee, Oklahoma, dodged limits on loans to major stockholders by giving friends money to buy much of his stake. One pal, DiGeronimo, 50, further defrauded Victor by exaggerating the price he was paying for a Holiday Inn and pocketing the extra loan proceeds. DiGeronimo got 1 1/2 years, as did Walsh, 38, who pulled a similar scam. Shipman got nine.

Janet Lawler 47, branch manager of Far West Federal in Portland, Oregon, borrowed money in the names of Far West customers, paying each loan off with another. She amassed $510,000. Awaits sentence.

James Irvine IV 31, assistant manager, Commonwealth Federal in North Wales, Pennsylvania, stole $200,000 by ordering cash for the bank vault, recording lower amounts, and pocketing the difference. Eighteen months.

Robert S. Candee 38, entrepreneur, wrote himself $470,000 in checks drawn on accounts that he and his wife had already closed. Two Rhode Island financial institutions lost $72,000 in the scam. Sentence: one year in jail.

Darlene Peters 51, vice president at the Britton branch of First Federal Savings of Watertown, South Dakota, created a fictitious loan to the county treasurer’s office and spent the money herself. One year.

John R. Gaustad 36, head of Midland Mortgage Co. in Bismarck, North Dakota, financed fictitious mortgages through First Federal of Huron, South Dakota. The money went to shore up Midland. Sentence: 37 months.

Jerry A. Laughlin Robert G. May Laughlin, senior vice president, and May, vice president, of Home Federal in Albany, Oregon, falsified loan sales records to embezzle commissions. Five years probation for each.

James Piersoll III 26, a borrower at Peoples Savings Bank in Martin’s Ferry, Ohio, falsified loan applications that totaled $142,059. Sentence: three years and one month in jail, three years probation, and full restitution of funds.

Martin Vickers 43, former vice president of Gill Savings in San Antonio, used bogus borrowers to raise some fast cash to play the stock market with his friend John Magan, 56. Vickers set up five straw-man loans at the thrift totaling $270,000. The two were exposed when the market washed them out. Vickers was convicted of making false entries and fraudulent loans, and sentenced to five years in prison. He was also ordered to make full restitution. Magan has been indicted and awaits trial.

James P. McClain 44, was president of First American Capital, a real estate subsidiary of San Angelo Savings & Loan of San Angelo, Texas. He and an associate split the proceeds from falsely inflated loans that were built up through a series of land flips. McClain filed for bankruptcy when he couldn’t repay loans worth some $138 million. He was convicted of conspiracy to commit tax fraud and failure to report $2.3 million in income on the land flips. He is awaiting sentence.

THE VERNON SIX It takes a special effort for one group of felons to stand out in a crowded field. But these guys had the wrong stuff — in spades.

Woody F. Lemons (right), 44, chairman of now-legendary Vernon Savings & Loan Association of Dallas, earned the spotlight the hard way: He stole it. Lemons led his band of thieves on a merry chase that few will ever match for sheer cupidity, not to mention stupidity. When Vernon finally failed in March 1987, it held a portfolio of loans that were 96% delinquent. Lemons was nailed for arranging an inflated loan to buy and develop property in Arlington, Texas. Half the $3.5 million loan was slated to make its way back to his pockets, prosecutors charged, though ultimately only $200,000 did. Lemons then tried to hide the money from bank examiners by disguising it as ”consulting” fees. His sentence: 30 years.

Patrick G. King, 50 (left), Vernon’s president, conspired with Pat Malone, 47 (bottom), president of Vernon’s Dallas division, to reimburse his officers for $55,000 in political campaign contributions made with Vernon funds. Before ! he joined Vernon in 1983, King had been director of regulatory supervision for Texas S&Ls. Malone got three years probation and was ordered to repay the $55,000. King got five years and must pay $65,000 in restitution.

Then there are Vernon’s slippery customers. Jack D. Atkinson, 54, a Dallas real estate developer, failed to mention when he applied for a loan that part of the money would go to pay rent on a beach house in Solana Beach, California, which was frequented by a senior Vernon official. Over three years Atkinson paid rent of some $600,000. James R. Veteto, 53, president of a Vernon subsidiary, was also privy to the scheme. Each man got a year.

Laurence B. Vineyard Jr., 41, a local businessman, had been paying other debts and expenses with a $12.7 million loan from Vernon since 1984. In June 1986 he used $2.6 million to pay $1.4 million in cash for a house in Dallas, to set up a trust for his kids, and for other personal expenses. Vineyard, who claimed the loan was for a stock purchase, was convicted of misusing the $2.6 million, ordered to pay it back, and sentenced to five years in prison. He is also serving a consecutive five-year sentence for a 1987 fraud conviction involving Key Savings & Loan of Englewood, Colorado.

Jerry Powell chairman and part owner of Sentry Savings of Lubbock, Texas, falsified documents in borrowing $2.7 million. Powell kept $100,000 and used the rest for interest on a real estate loan. Awaits sentence.

Robert E. Savage 40, chief financial officer of Caprock S&L of Lubbock, and others laundered $1.5 million to help mask the thrift’s capital inadequacies. He was sentenced to five years probation and $70,000 in restitution.

Paul Sau-Ki Cheng and Simon E. Heath Cheng and Heath, both 36, were co-chairmen of Dallas’s Guaranty Federal S&L. They used a false letter of appraisal in borrowing $10 million from the thrift on property in Jacksonville, Florida, allegedly worth $11 million. Cheng was convicted on ten counts including conspiracy, misapplication of funds, bank fraud, and wire fraud. Heath was convicted on 11 counts. Not yet sentenced, they face maximum penalties of 70 and 80 years, respectively.

Jimmy R. Hoffman 46, was a CPA and senior partner at Hoffman Raisch Fine & Co., a New York accounting firm. In 1986, Hoffman entered into a partnership agreement with executives at a real estate subsidiary of Independent American Savings of % Dallas. The group conspired to backdate documents to create $1.6 million in phony losses. Hoffman was convicted of creating a fictitious tax return. He awaits sentencing, which is being transferred from a Texas court to New York.

John H. Roberts Jr. 44, chairman of Summit Savings Association in Dallas, bought himself an airplane by means of a nominee loan. The judge deemed the action decidedly unbankerly and flew Roberts off to jail for five years.

Gregory C. Daley 39, was president of Richardson Energy, a subsidiary of Richardson Savings & Loan of Richardson, Texas, but apparently he didn’t have enough to do. He ran a personal wildcatting business out of the company’s office. Daley used a line of credit at the energy company to finance his operations and charged expenses to the S&L. Though the statute of limitations had run out on most of his financial finagling, he was still sentenced to two years and fined $5,000.

Allen W. Salah 29, was involved in a complex kiting scheme between Texas thrifts. His financial irregularities were uncovered only because the FBI was investigating Salah’s automobile export practices. Thirty months.

Gordon G. Melcher 62, a director and loan committee member at Irving Savings Association in Irving, Texas, pleaded guilty to wire fraud and to causing false statements to appear in Irving’s records. He got a six-month sentence.

Davey J. Hilling an engineer and contractor from the Pacific Northwest, bought control of Irving Savings Association in Irving, Texas, in 1983 and promptly ran it into the ground. He was convicted, however, of lending $2.7 million to a friend to convert an Idaho potato warehouse to grain storage. The friend paid off a $1 million mortgage on the spud sheds and passed $1.4 million back to Hilling, who used some of it to liquidate his own debts. He is appealing his five-year sentence. His pal got off.

Donald Robinson 27, a borrower at Sunbelt Savings of Burkburnett, Texas, forged checks. He got away with two for under $10,000 and one for $49,000. But he was nabbed when he went for $522,000. Fifteen months and a $3,000 fine.

David R. David 36, a lawyer, was part of a group that borrowed $16 million from Western Savings of Hurst, Texas, supposedly to develop land. Instead, they paid off $64 million in delinquent loans. Not yet sentenced.

Gary Lee Fradd Wade Patrick Hogan Hogan and Fradd, both 39, sold mobile homes in the west Texas oil patch. Andrews Savings & Loan near Midland financed their inventory of 31 homes. But the thrift didn’t demand their certificates of title as collateral. So as the two merrily sold their inventory, they neglected to pay Andrews back. After missing several interest payments, they admitted that their financial statements were a mirage. By then, Andrews was out $572,562.68. Three years each.

James M. Holbrook a director of Summit Savings of Dallas, took $37,400 out of a customer’s account in 1984 to make a payment on a Lear jet that had been leased by Summit’s owner. He is awaiting sentence.

Pamila Genene Davis 30, an account manager at a subsidiary of Bank Plus Savings of San Antonio, embezzled from escrow accounts. That theft triggered losses estimated at $102,000. Two-and-a-half years and $98,000 in restitution.

Bennett L. Rosenthal Ralph E. Strader Mary Jane Wilson Strader, 51, and Rosenthal, 33, real estate developers in Houston, and Wilson, 58, their office manager, got a $17 million development loan from a local subsidiary of Sunbelt Savings. To get their hands on the money, the trio submitted invoices for architectural work from fictitious companies they set up, complete with mailing addresses and letterheads. Ten years for the two men; five years probation for Wilson.

Kenneth C. Hood 45, vice president of Western Savings Association of Dallas, made a false statement in connection with an $11 million loan he took out from — you guessed it — Sunbelt Savings. Five years probation.

Robert Bourgeois and Richard Crowe Crowe, 47, chairman of a real-estate-related subsidiary of Independent American Savings in Grand Prairie, Texas, and Bourgeois, 37, the subsidiary’s vice president, backdated a limited partnership agreement. They also filed tax returns that included this false information. The backdating was part of a complex real estate scam that netted Independent American some $8 million in profit. The two conspirators are awaiting sentence.

Andrew J. Archuleta 44, owner with L. Scott Moore (right) of a Dallas construction firm, falsified invoices to mask the costs of a home he built for Joseph Smith, a loan officer at Sunbelt Savings. Three years probation.

Neil Digiammatteo operating partner for Lafayette Square, a troubled Texas-size shopping mall, % made false statements while trying to refinance a $4.3 million loan from Commodore Savings of Dallas. Six months.

Carl Gerjes 48, president of Delta Savings of Alvin, Texas, skimmed roughly $90,000 from commitment fees on $225 million in loans and used the money to pay bonuses to himself and a select circle of officers. Outside auditors had discovered this fraud. But Gerjes, according to the prosecuting attorney, had fended off the thrift’s regular auditors when they raised questions about the bonus account. Five years probation and $68,800 in restitution.

L. Scott Moore 45, Archuleta’s sidekick, was also entangled with Sunbelt’s Joseph Smith (right). He agreed to accept a secret transfer of $125,000 to help Smith hide his income from the IRS. He is awaiting sentencing.

Richard Brevik 47, assistant VP with Alamo Savings of San Antonio, took a $65,000 bribe in connection with a $1.2 million loan to developer Ray McMinn (see next page). Four years and $463,000 in restitution.

Susan Petr Hulon a Texas real estate company owner, was nailed for significantly undervaluing her possessions when she filed for bankruptcy. San Angelo Savings was one of her bilked creditors. Four years.

Joseph R. Smith 35, Sunbelt Savings’ ubiquitous loan officer, altered bank documents to hide his thrift’s sorry state from regulators. The IRS also nailed him for not reporting the income Scott Moore tried to help him hide. Ninety days.

John Endicott 46, owner of a Houston truck repair business, used phony invoices to get loans, which served as collateral for more loans. The total: $2 million. Worst hit was Houston’s Home Savings. Five years and a $40,000 fine.

Louis Rochester stockholder and board member of Odessa Savings of Odessa, Texas (flanked at left by his lawyer and his wife, Lois), pushed a $7.2 million real estate loan through his bank for a business partner, who was never charged. Soon after the loan was approved, the two men signed an agreement to buy the property together. Rochester was convicted of providing false entries and misapplying bank funds. Five years probation, a $10,000 fine, and $7.2 million in restitution.

Leo J. Niekerk 43, a developer, received a $3 million commission for selling some land financed by Sunbelt Savings. To shake off the IRS, he altered documents to make that fee appear to be a loan. Five years.

James Eakins David Gonzalez Leo A. Ladouceur Eakins, 45, a vice president at Surburban Savings in San Antonio, and stockholders Ladouceur, 37 (right), and Gonzalez, 34, borrowed $3.4 million from the thrift — $1.2 million more than they needed for their stated purpose of buying real estate. The trio also orchestrated land flips that cost Surburban Savings more than $1 million. Ladouceur got 40 months; Eakins, 33 months. Gonzalez is awaiting sentence.

Mildred Mallet 50, vice president at First Savings of Orange, Texas, embezzled about $600,000. Appearing in court in a wheelchair, she was whisked off to serve six months in jail. Mallet also received up to five years probation.

Ned L. Ayers Donald Baucum Raymond McMinn Patrick Rosenauer Ayers, 53, VP of Alamo Savings of San Antonio, and attorney Baucum, 44, conspired with Rosenauer, 42, a VP at another bank, and McMinn, 38, a local real estate developer, in a land flip scam. The loans generated were used to cover other business and personal expenses — and to pay kickbacks, such as $100,000 that McMinn gave Ayers. They each got ten years; Rosenauer, four years; Baucum, five years probation.

Bert Barton and Wallace Drayton These two cost Washington Federal of Seattle over $500,000. Drayton, 47, was a VP and loan officer at the thrift, one of the strongest in the state. His friend Barton, 43, owned Metroplex Fund Ltd., a loan broker. To grease the way for dubious borrowers to get $600,000 in loans, Barton gave Drayton a 10% kickback. The checks were made out to Billy Rose, an alias Drayton fashioned after his wife’s maiden name, Billie Rose. Each was sentenced to a year and a day.

Merrick Leler and Vijay Parekh Leler, 38, senior vice president of Lamar Savings of Austin, Texas, conspired to make false entries in the thrift’s records. To boost their thrifts’ net worth, they warehoused assets with big borrowers until a legitimate buyer came along. Result: a loss of more than $11 million. Parekh, 59, Lamar Savings’ vice chairman, was involved in a scheme to misuse nearly $16 million of the thrift’s funds. He got five years probation and a $100,000 fine. Leler is awaiting sentencing.

Jeffrey L. Perdue 43, vice president of U.S. Credit Corp. of Virginia Beach, a home equity loan broker. To keep local thrifts as eager customers for his packages of loans, Perdue covered up defaults. The S&Ls lost $2 million. Two years.

Melvin G. Heide 61, a Seattle real estate developer, got overextended in the early 1980s. He made fraudulent statements to Shoreline Savings to get loans. The thrift’s eventual loss: nearly $800,000. Three years.

John Harrell E. Morten Hopkins Robert Hopkins Jr. Robert Hopkins, 59, chairman of Commodore Savings in Dallas (top), brother Morten, 50, vice chairman, and CEO John Harrell, 56, (bottom) used bank funds to make illegal political donations to federal, state, and local candidates. They made false entries in Commodore’s books to deceive examiners and used as conduits two other financial institutions the brothers controlled. Fifteen years for big brother Hopkins; five for the other two.

Robert Crump, Richard Randall, Jack Roberts Crump, 46, and Randall paid Savings of Texas vice president Roberts $100,000 to get a $3.5 million loan. The defendants claimed they lent Roberts the money to set up a golf club repair shop. As far as the jury was concerned, that landed them short of the green. Crump got five years and $1.5 million in restitution; Roberts, three years and $1 million. Both are appealing. Randall pleaded and got six months.

Roy C. Marshall 50, president of Lee Savings in Austin, believed in fast service. On the day his bank approved $365,000 in loans to two borrowers he received kickbacks from same. Three years and $500,000 in restitution.

Charles W. Kriegel 50, a director of Austin’s Lee Savings, took a $100,000 kickback for helping a close business associate get a $2.4 million loan. The sentence he received: three years and a fine of $250,000.

Habib G. Hakim a Virginia condo developer, told buyers he put their down payments in escrow. But when his costs overran, he spent the money. Three years probation along with restitution of $417,938.50 to the condo buyers.

Joseph Casperone Francis Clark Clark bought 202 acres near Fort Worth for about $8 million. He and Casperone sold the land to limited partners who filed fraudulent loan applications to Investex Savings of Tyler, Texas. An appraiser in cahoots with the pair valued the plots at more than $42 million. Investex Savings lent over $33 million and went broke when the partnerships defaulted. Clark got eight years and agreed to repay $11 million; Casperone, six years and $3.5 million in restitution.

Sharon Baskerville 35, was a branch manager at First Colonial Savings in Dinwiddie, Virginia. From 1984 until she was caught in January 1990, she diverted $4 million from 106 customer accounts, principally cash that they paid for CDs. Roger Frydrychowski, the U.S. district attorney who handled her case, says that she splurged on, among other things, more than 100 Hummel figurines and clothes she stored in her attic with the tags still on them. Her fraud severely damaged the S&L. Her sentence: nine years, nine months.

Angelo J. Celesia Jr. Gilbert E. Holt Jr. Real estate developers Holt, 38, and Celesia, 42, raised money by kiting checks among several Virginia thrifts. In a single day in 1989 they deposited six checks for $410,000 at three Norfolk-area branches of Investors Savings. As established customers, they got immediate credit. But when the thrift noticed they were withdrawing $250,000 the next day, alarms bells went off. Virginia’s Trustbank Savings lost $610,000. Not yet sentenced.

Aaron Angle David Hess Angle, 28, a loan officer at Guaranty Federal in Dallas, filed false documents in support of a home loan application from attorney Hess, 41 (right). They submitted a photo of a two-story Austin house along with an inflated appraisal; the property Hess actually owned was an empty lot down the street from the house in the picture. Hess ended up pocketing $138,000 in surplus loan proceeds, minus a $15,000 commission for Angle. Hess was sentenced to one year, Angle to 1 1/2.

James E. Angel 54, owner of Angel Manufacturing of Fort Worth, submitted over $1 million in phony invoices to Texas American Bank/West Side. The thrift lost $500,000. Sentence: five years and full restitution.

Barry S. Gillingwater 47, a major Austin real estate developer, participated in a $9 million kickback scheme in order to finagle loans from Sentry Savings of Lubbock, Texas. Gillingwater will be spending three years in prison.

Donald Lasater 39, double-pledged his imported cookie business as collateral for loans. When he went bust, American S&L of Salt Lake City ate $273,000; another Utah thrift swallowed $65,000. Awaits sentencing.

Eve Freedlander 63, was senior executive vice president of Freedlander Inc. (”The Mortgage People”), which made and serviced home equity loans. At its peak in 1986, Freedlander was the fourth largest such firm in the U.S., operating in 33 states. After making loans, Freedlander sold them to other investors, hiding the fact that as many as 25% were delinquent. Fannie Mae, for one, bought some $215 million of loans and has filed a $20 million civil suit against the bankrupt outfit; the case is pending. Says Stanley Joynes, lawyer for about a dozen aggrieved investors: ”The feeling has been all along that the company was a house of cards that collapsed.” Freedlander, who filed for bankruptcy in 1988, is awaiting sentence. She could receive up to 15 years in prison and $750,000 in fines.

Frank Butler III and Owen Thornton Butler, 54, attorney for Landbank Equity in Virginia Beach, and accountant Thornton, 36, concealed delinquencies and inflated property values when they sold home equity loans to thrifts. Thirty-seven S&Ls lost some $45 million. Butler has begun serving an eight-year sentence; Thornton, six years. Landbank CEO William Runnells and wife Marika are on trial. They fled after they were indicted, but Runnells was found in Texas — working as a hypnotist.

Mary Lynne Smith 42, head of a title company, provided false policies for real estate backing $3.7 million in loans from a Houston S&L. Her partner killed himself in jail before he could be tried. Five years and a $10,000 fine.

James Meriwether Richard Semrad Semrad, 42, a broker who led seminars on how to buy real estate with no money down, duped Republic Savings & Loan of Milwaukee with colleague Meriwether, 43. How? Simple. They said Meriwether had made a down payment when he actually had not. When he couldn’t make the payments on the loan, the scheme was exposed. The estimated loss to Republic was $25,000. Semrad has been sentenced to six months in jail; Meriwether got six months on probation.

Charles A. Topalian 37, branch manager at Great American Savings in Bellevue, Washington, liked to play the commodities market. Awakened last March by a margin call, he cashed checks at his branch on some of his accounts at other banks and used the money to cover his shortfall. He then withheld the checks from the interbank deposit so that they did not clear. By the end of the month he was wiped out in the commodities market and found out at the job. His employer lost about $300,000. Fifteen months.

B. Paul Romero % 45, vice president of a subsidiary of Guaranty Federal in Dallas, persuaded his parent company to grant a $10 million loan on property that prosecutors said was ”grossly overvalued.” Three years.

Jean Marie St. Gelais 55, a Canadian, set up seven oil and gas limited partnerships in Houston. He borrowed $15 million from Anchor Savings & Loan in Kansas City and Crossland Savings in New York, purportedly for drilling and exploration, and got backing for the loans from insurance companies. He used some of the money to buy a penthouse in Houston and to pay off old debts. St. Gelais was sentenced to 24 years in prison, fined $1 million, and ordered to pay more than $13 million in restitution. His son, Denis, is still a fugitive.

James Scarborough 49, a developer, bribed retailers to sign fake lease commitments. He then used these to get a $3 million loan to build a shopping mall. Milwaukee’s First Federal Savings lost $1 million. Three years.

Conroe and Houston Texas the Great CESSPOOL Of Land Swindles ……The GARGANTUAN Land Frauds and Government LIES. … Bill Taylor said Robert LVickers, 56, used the funds, which were intended to … ties to Texas financial institutions, pleaded guilty and was convicted Friday of two counts of bank fraud. …… buyers were prepared by other defendants, who presented them to Pioneer.

The Greatest Texas Bank Job / Felonious Colonias … Land Frauds ……/the-greatest-texas-bank-job-feloni…Jul 2, 2015 – Robert LVickers, 58, partner of WB Etheridge, Thomas Eikel, WG Horne ….. Is But A DROP IN THE BUCKET involved in the Land FraudFinancial Fraud …… Pioneer’s attorney Steven Zager said he does not know how much …

Global Worldwide Bank Lootings Land Swindles Document Frauds…/the-corruption-is-massive-and-beyond.html

Jan 1, 2016 – TOXIC ZOMBIE LAND SPECULATIONS AND FINANCIAL FRAUD …… MELT DOWN – RV King and Robert LVickers Pinewood Village TEXAS … The lawsuit says Pioneer agreed to provide Mortgage CreditCorp up to $35 …

The Great Global Bank Swindles ….. Google TRYS to Censor Me … … Protecting The Government Employee’s Financial Interests Comes FIRST … …… of fictitious buyers were prepared by other defendants, who presented them to Pioneer. ….. This is what Robert LVickers and the BOYS Pulled Just North Of Houston …

Zombie Failed Toxic Subprime Land Swindles and Bank Frauds ……/zombie-failed-toxic-subprime-land-swindles-an…

Apr 27, 2015 – Zombie Failed Toxic Subprime Land Swindles and Bank Frauds … The Fact Is TRILLIONS have been looted and Financial Interests associated …. Hello Houston FBI: Robert LVickers, W.G. Horne III, WB Etheridge, …. Pioneer is seeking $14 million in actual damages and $42 million 

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APRIL 23, 1989Continue reading the main story

ON THE STRETCH OF INTERSTATE 30 THAT LINKS Dallas to Lake Ray Hubbard, about 19 miles away, Dallas County is a work of urbanization still in progress.

Here, there are no tinted towers, glitzy high-rise rehabs or tony supper clubs. Instead, there are condominiums. Thousands of them. Row upon row upon row. Some are inhabited, lined with the banners of bankrupt real estate (”Now Leasing! No Deposit! Six Weeks Free!”). Others are dark and deserted, with windows of cardboard or no windows at all. Still others are dilapidated and skeletal. And even where there are no condos, there are slabs for condos: flat concrete gravestones for a building boom that died five years ago.

This is not a place one would associate with the go-go times of Texas savings institutions. Gone are the helicopters from the powder-blue helipad on Lake Ray Hubbard and the fleet of Rolls-Royces and Mercedes-Benzes parked outside the nearby Wise Circle Grill. But it was here – on this I-30 condo corridor between the bedroom communities of Garland and Mesquite – that Federal regulators got their first whiff of the disaster brewing in the nation’s thrifts.

According to court records, these condominiums and slabs of condominiums were the end product of a massive land-investment scam engineered by a small network of savings institutions headed by the Empire Savings and Loan Association of Mesquite. At Empire, a handful of local developers – captained by D. L. (Danny) Faulkner, a former house painter turned condominium developer – relieved the nation’s thrift system of more than $500 million in what one Federal regulator called ”one of the most reckless and fraudulent land-investment schemes” his agency had ever seen.

When Empire was closed by Federal regulators on March 14, 1984, it was the first closing openly attributed to fraud in the 50-year history of the federally insured thrift system. So far, more than 100 people have been convicted for their involvement in the scheme.

Continue reading the main story

On the day Empire was shut down, its chairman, Spencer H. Blain Jr., was banned from the savings and loan business. In April 1987, Blain settled a civil racketeering suit with the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation (F.S.L.I.C.) for $100 million.

Danny Faulkner as well as Blain and five other key figures – said by Federal prosecutors to have made a total of $112 million in bogus condominium deals financed by Empire loans – are on trial in Lubbock, Tex., on racketeering and conspiracy charges. Clifford Sinclair, a Faulkner associate, has been sentenced to 13 years in prison and he plans to testify against Faulkner and the others. Those on trial plan to place much of the blame for fraud at Empire on Sinclair.

The Federal charges center on the relationship among Faulkner; his partner, James L. Toler, and Blain. Through Blain, the Government contends, Faulkner and Toler essentially controlled lending at Empire, though neither held any post at Empire nor any significant stock. None of the accused deny making substantial money from the I-30 condominium deals, or that widespread fraud took place in connection with the Empire loans. But each denies having done anything illegal. The fraud, they say, was committed by others who had worked for them.

Today, the $279 million Federal deposit insurance payout at Empire pales beside other thrift losses and failures. The 1986 closing of just one Texas institution, for instance, cost $1.3 billion. In the five years since Empire was shut down, about 500 of the nation’s savings institutions have been closed or merged, or are scheduled to be closed or merged, by regulators.

The bailouts have bankrupted F.S.L.I.C., which, in 1984, had $6.1 billion for such emergencies. Last year alone, when F.S.L.I.C. began wholesale closings, it committed $37 billion in bailouts. Many more thrift insolvencies are expected, and industry experts now estimate that the cost to American taxpayers of all these failures will exceed $100 billion.

ALTHOUGH THE DISASTER at Empire Savings gave Federal regulators their first glimpse of fraud as a major cause of thrift failures, the role fraud played was, until recently, consistently underrated – by regulators, by Congress, and certainly by the savings and loan industry itself. Sagging economic conditions in Texas and euphemisms like ”speculative lending” or ”imprudent management” served to mask the seriousness of the thrift debacle.

For the period between 1984 and 1987, according to a Congressional study released last fall, thrift losses due to fraud were placed at $8 billion to $11 billion. At least three-quarters of thrift insolvencies during the same period were linked, by this study, to some significant level of misconduct or abuse.

”It was the most widespread, reckless and fraudulent era in this nation’s banking history,” says Edwin J. Gray, who presided over the disaster when he was chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, the nation’s chief thrift regulator.

The very mechanics of white-collar crime – the misapplication of the legitimate tools of business – have transformed a sleepy industry into a regulatory nightmare, making fraud hard to define, harder to detect and harder yet to contain.

In Texas, a special fraud task force of 75 full-time investigators – from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service and Federal regulatory agencies – has been investigating widespread banking corruption from a list of more than 500 names, including large numbers of prominent Texans.


So far, the focus of fraud has been on Texas and California. At times, the hand wringing over the thrift disaster suggests that post-deregulation thrift failures were the result of economic acts of God. But thrifts like Empire failed, for the most part, because those who managed them killed them. And they were able to kill them because deregulation – the national policy that sought to save them – provided the motive, the opportunity and the means.

ON OCT. 15, 1982, RONALD REAGAN strode into the Rose Garden to sign the Garn-St. Germain Depository Institutions Act. Following earlier deregulation legislation in 1980, Garn-St. Germain was the final step in the process of deregulating the nation’s federally chartered financial institutions.

The 14,000 or so commercial banks were generally solvent, but the 3,000 or so thrifts were, by all accounts, in terrible condition. Thrifts were spending more than they could collect. High interest rates had forced home lending to a standstill. Mortgage payments from older, low-interest home loans were providing increasingly inadequate income. (Although state-chartered savings institutions virtually obliterated the boundaries between banks and thrifts, federally chartered thrifts were still required to lend primarily for housing, even after Garn-St. Germain.) Deregulation in general sought to restructure savings institutions by allowing them to invest in shorter-term enterprises, including direct investments in real estate, stocks and securities, as well as the ability to make commercial loans. It also allowed thrifts to pay market rates for deposits. What was little noticed at the time was a contradictory effort to strengthen the safety net: the Federal insurance on deposits was raised from $40,000 to $100,000 per account.

”All in all,” said the President in the Rose Garden, ”I think we hit the jackpot.”

The ones to hit the jackpot, however, were not the people the President or Congress or Federal regulators had in mind.

Even before Garn-St. Germain reached the Rose Garden, deregulation was in full swing at Empire Savings, a state-chartered thrift. Operating out of a small shopping center, Empire seemed to be making a fortune bankrolling condominium developments in the I-30 corridor.

Since the late 1970’s, state-chartered savings and loan institutions in Texas had been able to participate in real-estate development in precisely the manner envisioned by deregulation. In fact, the performance of deregulated Texas institutions like Empire had been used as a basis for regulatory studies supporting Garn-St. Germain.

When Spencer Blain became chairman of Empire Savings in March 1982, the thrift was a small, sluggish local home-lender. Almost overnight, Blain transformed it into a regional economic force. Between December 1981 and September 1982, loans at Empire more than quadrupled while deposits tripled.

The cash for loans was generated by another creature of deregulation – brokered funds, which are usually large deposits placed by commissioned middlemen on behalf of such cash-rich clients as credit unions and pension funds. By offering higher interest rates – often two percentage points higher than other thrifts and commercial banks – Empire could attract millions. And because of the security of Federal deposit insurance and the efficiency of computer technology, those millions could be generated overnight by brokers.

Empire’s startling transformation, however, was inextricably tied to the fortunes of one man – Danny Faulkner.

Even in Dallas, where the making and breaking of millionaires is routine, Faulkner was special.

He was at the center of a condo culture in the I-30 corridor. While high interest rates had brought home-building to a near standstill in other parts of Dallas, real-estate development was booming here because Faulkner, through Blain, made it happen – and he made it happen because he was brash enough and savvy enough to capitalize on the deregulation of thrifts. Each Saturday morning at the Circle

Grill, people in fancy cars pulled in early for breakfast with Danny Faulkner, who was noted for his generosity. By late 1982, a roomful of insiders, politicians and would-be Danny Faulkners rang up tabs for as much as $1,000 a week on the Condo King.

Faulkner was an unabashed sort. When his son was married, the Tulsa Philharmonic was hired to play the theme from ”Rocky.” En route to the north Dallas reception, a uniformed guard stood at the tollway with a large sack of quarters, tossing in the fare for Faulkner’s guests.

A rough-hewn developer with a penchant for Rolls-Royces and Rolexes, Faulkner was a sixth-grade dropout from Kosciusko, Miss., and he professed not to be able to read or write. In the 1950’s, he picked cotton in Louisiana and Arkansas. In the 1960’s, he painted houses in Corpus Christi and Dallas. But by the early 1980’s, Danny Faulkner was rich and living in a sprawling ranch home on Lake Ray Hubbard.

Like most developers, Faulkner was a creature of credit. As a painting contractor in the 1960’s and 70’s, he relied on loans to bridge his business from contract to contract. His first real-estate venture was a collection of small rental houses bought with borrowed money. To cement his relationship with his creditors, he began buying small amounts of stock in the savings and loan associations that lent him money. By 1979 – the year when he built Faulkner Point, his first condominium project on Lake Ray Hubbard – he was part of a group of close friends and associates that controlled, through stock ownership, at least three thrifts, including Empire Savings.

By fall 1982, however, Faulkner was no longer developing his own condominiums. Although he had developed the handful of condo projects along the I-30 corridor that gave the initial impetus to the boom, he and Empire Savings were the source of the inspiration and the cash for the building frenzy. He and James Toler, a former Mayor of Garland, bought land on option and then sold it at much higher prices to condominium investors. Built around the concept of so-called ”Faulkner communities,” a loosely associated network of I-30 developments, Faulkner began offering to sell and build turn-key projects that defied real-estate conventions.

According to real-estate records, investors put up no cash of their own. In exchange for their signatures, Faulkner and his associates would provide land, appraisals, financing, architectural plans, construction, marketing and sales, and the borrowers became the bank’s development partners. Moreover, Empire and the other close-knit lenders provided 110 percent financing, which included a cash ”bonus” to investors signing the note.

For many with modest prospects, the deal was an overwhelming temptation. In exchange for a single set of signatures, a secretary or a carpenter could become a condominium developer, getting as much as $43,000 in cash from Empire Savings as a bonus. What these investors didn’t seem to know, or didn’t care to acknowledge, was that the bonus was not a gift at all, but part of the overall money they were borrowing.

Hidden from the investors were the land flips that they were financing. Real-estate documents reveal that a parcel of land, purchased by Faulkner and Toler at a low price, would be appraised at a higher price, often as much as 10 or 20 times its cost. The title to the land would pass from Faulkner to Toler, often through representatives, then to close associates. Each time the land changed hands, the price would spiral upward, until finally the land could be divided and sold to investors at the inflated price. As a result, the unwary investors were obligating themselves to loans for land that was grossly overvalued. At every stage of the land flip, Empire provided the money.

No money actually changed hands among Faulkner, Toler and their associates. Their profits, often millions at a time, were provided from money borrowed by the investors at Empire. Empire was paid interest, commissions and fees from the proceeds of those loans. The borrowers, namely the investors, paid for everything – including legal fees, appraisals, taxes and title costs. Some of these investors took part not once but as many as six times, each ending up with debts at Empire of $12 million or more.

LOOT THE BANKS …  Then go on a Global  Expansion and Buying Spree


INSOLVENT BANKSTERS  Go on a Global Buying Spree and Expansion

When the loans came due, and investors could not pay, and the land was not worth what was paid for it, scores of borrowers/investors who had greatly exaggerated their personal worth to get their loans ended up in jail. It then became apparent that the ultimate victim of the land flips was not the investor but Empire Savings and Loan, which was drained of all its assets.

SPENCER BLAIN’S RISE IN THE Texas thrift system had been a relatively smooth one. The balding, button-down executive had headed a thrift on the Gulf Coast of Texas before being recruited at the Austin-based First Federal Savings and Loan Association. He was in his third term as a director of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Little Rock, the regional thrift regulator. And because of his tenure in the industry, he was slated to become president of the Texas Savings and Loan League, the state’s industry organization.

As president of First Federal, Blain had met Faulkner in 1980, when First Federal agreed to invest in an expansion of Faulkner Point. The next year, when Faulkner and Toler purchased a 69-acre tract across the street, First Federal became a partner, guaranteeing a $3 million bank loan.


But by late 1981, according to a former director of First Federal, the thrift’s directors had become disenchanted with Blain for problems associated with a computer-services venture the thrift had started at his urging; and when Blain walked away from his second wife and a failing $3.05 million personal real-estate venture, he and the board agreed to part ways.

In December 1981, as Blain prepared to leave his job at First Federal, Faulkner offered him a post at Empire. Empire’s president, S. A. Bieler, was leaving to invest in condominium projects of his own.

Still deeply in debt, Blain moved into a lakeside condo leased from Faulkner. His divorce was negotiated by one of Faulkner’s attorneys.

Unknown to regulators at the time (and it was only discovered when thrift examiners combed through Empire’s transactions), Blain started purchasing control of Empire from Faulkner and his associates shortly after he arrived in March 1982. To pay for the stock, he borrowed a total of $830,763 from Faulkner and Toler. Five months after he joined Empire, Blain owned more than 67 percent of the thrift’s stock, and named himself chairman of the board. In the meantime, Blain had approved at least $40 million in loans for Faulkner-Toler projects.

Like any banking institution, Empire still made money by making loans. But suddenly the perspective was radically different. Where savings institutions like Empire once made money over the long term (from the clockwork conservatism of middle-class mortgage payments), they now made money over the short term (from investments and commissions and fees). The more and bigger the loans, the more and bigger the fees.

In a matter of months, the demand for I-30 condos was dwarfed by Empire’s supply of federally insured, brokered cash. Moreover, through its wholly owned real-estate subsidiary, Statewide Service Corporation, Empire was beginning to become a warehouse for I-30 projects, selling participations in Empire loans to other savings institutions, and refinancing loans made by other thrifts for I-30 deals. By October 1982, the land-flip business had become a juggernaut, so efficient that one high-level participant called it ”a money machine.”

Blain’s activities did not go unnoticed by Federal regulators. In October 1982, Federal Home Loan Bank Board examiners appeared for their regular examination of Empire.

Thrift institutions had long had one mission – to provide long-term mortgage lending for single-family homes. But as deregulated thrifts departed more and more from their traditional mission, there developed not only new pressures on the examining process, but a growing impatience with the process of regulation itself.


This was particularly true in the region served by the Federal Home Loan Bank of Little Rock (the bank was moved to Dallas in late 1983), a five-state area that included Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico and Arkansas. Here, where deregulation began in the late 1970’s, underpaid and overworked examiners trained in consumer-lending practices were suddenly forced to analyze such complex business transactions as stock mergers, land swaps and development loans.

Before the regulatory system was finally overhauled in July 1985, there were only 116 examiners available to patrol the 510 thrifts under the Little Rock bank. As late as 1984, a new examiner could expect a starting salary of $14,000 a year, $5,000 less than his or her banking counterpart. As a result, turnover in the region was high.

Nonetheless, the examiners scratched hard on Empire’s veneer of growth and stability, and what they found did not look good. In their report, the examiners deemed Blain’s overconcentration on condominium investments along I-30 a ”risky” strategy. His dependence on brokered funds was troublesome, they said. A large number of Empire borrowers owed sums that were beyond Empire’s limits. Often, real-estate loan files contained no appraisals. Construction funds were disbursed without proper controls.

The examination was not completed until mid-December 1982, and not filed until a month later. It would be April 1983 before Blain and Empire responded. By that time, Blain had lent at least another $200 million in condo deals.

AS FAULKNER’S I-30 MARKETING APPARA-tus became more complex, so did the land flips. Such was the disdain toward regulation in the newly liberated environment that, even as examiners poked through Empire’s books, the thrift’s land flips became their most frenzied. Although the transactions appeared to follow perfectly legal business practices, Federal prosecutors said they were fraudulent for several reasons: the real-estate appraisals were inflated; the financial statements of investors were artificially boosted to show greater personal worth, and the same handful of men and women bought from and sold to one another.

According to real-estate records, land purchased in the morning on paper for $100,000 might pass through as many as five different buyers before being sold that same day in small parcels to investors for $1 million in Empire loans. At the beginning of the chain of buyers were Faulkner and Toler or people representing them. At the end of the line were the investors who received up to $43,000 for signing their names to the deals. (Investors were willing to pay the high prices not only for the immediate ”bonus” but because they were led to believe that what they were paying were still bargain prices.) For instance, on Oct. 6, the day before Federal examiners began their audit of the thrift, its real-estate subsidiary, Statewide, purchased 82 acres on I-30 for approximately $1.86 million, or 52 cents per square foot. The same day, Statewide sold the 82 acres to Faulkner and Toler for $3 million, or 85 cents per square foot. Faulkner and Toler then sold 18.6 acres of the property to one of their associates who, in turn, sold the property – now appraised at $8.50 to $12 per square foot – in seven plots to investors for $5.6 million, or $6.95 per square foot. In one day, Faulkner and associates ended up with approximately $3.74 million in profits, and the remaining 63.4 acres of raw land free and clear. Court records reveal that another spectacular series of transactions in November 1982 generated millions in personal profits for the bankers involved with Faulkner. On Nov. 19, Faulkner and Toler spent $5 million for 117 acres of land along I-30 known as the Greens. In the space of a few weeks, Faulkner and Toler flipped the land through a series of associates, finally selling it to investors in 62 tracts for $47.3 million financed by four savings and loans.

Faulkner and Toler collected an estimated $16 million from the sales. But on Nov. 27, several days after Empire had lent at least $8.4 million to investors in the Greens, Clifford Sinclair, a Faulkner associate, paid Blain $1.4 million in four separate $350,000 checks. In a deposition, Blain acknowledged that the cash came from ”the generosity of Danny Faulkner.”

In the same series of transactions, First State Building and Loan Association, of Mountain Home, Ark., lent $10.8 million to the investors. Two of the thrift’s officers were paid $2 million from the proceeds of the scheme. To hide the transaction, the cash was placed by Sinclair in a secret bank account designated for the ”Lucky Two.” (In June 1987, one of the men pleaded guilty to criminal charges in connection with the loans.) The cash proceeds were not limited to bankers. Real-estate and court records show a spreading of wealth by Faulkner and his friends. The head of the title company that closed the real-estate transactions received $600,000 in a land flip. The regional head of the Federal National Mortgage Association received a Rolex wristwatch, while his wife – a ”Faulkner communities” employee – received a Mercedes and a mink coat.


From the December 1982 land flip known as the Fountains, Texas Attorney General-elect Jim Mattox, an old Faulkner friend, received $200,000 in cashier’s checks (made out to his sister and his brother), for which, Faulkner later testified, Mattox had done nothing at all.

WHEN THE FEDERAL HOME LOAN Bank Board received the Jan. 12, 1983, report of its examiners, it caused few waves in Washington. The report was transmitted to the Federal Home Loan Bank of Little Rock, which in turn wrote Empire a letter asking for Empire’s response.

In the curious dual system that governed savings institutions in 1983, Federal examiners reported directly to Washington. But any supervisory actions that developed from their examinations were handled regionally. For four years, between 1979 and 1982, Spencer Blain had been a director of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Little Rock; in 1982, while the examiners were auditing him, Spencer Blain was chairman of the bank’s executive committee.

When a supervisory letter was mailed to him on Jan. 14, 1983, outlining the regulatory complaints, Blain ignored it altogether. He also ignored a second and a third. (In the meantime, he made $14.9 million by selling a parcel of land he had purchased from Faulkner and Toler to close Faulkner associates.) When he finally answered in April 1983, he simply denied that Empire had done anything wrong.

Like any pyramid enterprise, Empire was able to continue only so long as it could maintain a spectacular rate of growth. And once regulators moved to slow Empire’s condo loans, the end of Empire was simply a matter of time. In May 1983, the Texas thrift regulator forbade Empire to make any further I-30 land loans. By September 1983, when many of the old loans came due, investors couldn’t pay. And in November 1983, when details of the scheme were published in The Dallas Morning News, Empire found it impossible to find new investors. ON THE MORNING OF MARCH 14, 1984, EDWIN Gray, chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, gathered with his two board members for a staff presentation on Empire Savings and Loan. The purpose was to review the evidence for the proposed closing of Empire, which had suddenly become a fiscal wreck.

Gray had been on the bank board for a year. As a former press secretary for Ronald Reagan during his California governorship and a former thrift executive, he had been an ardent supporter of deregulation. But during his first year with the bank board, he started feeling uneasy about some of the trends that were emerging from his daily reports. In California, Florida and the Southwest – particularly Texas – thrifts were becoming swollen with brokered deposits, which were being converted into questionable loans.

Gray and the board heard the staff statistics. By mid-1983, Empire’s assets had swollen to $276 million, most of which were now loans to the I-30 projects. Assets grew to $308.9 million by January 1984, with more than 85 percent of the deposits coming from deposit brokers.

But what shook Gray that morning was a videotape prepared for the bank board by an appraiser who had surveyed the I-30 condominiums.


”I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” says Gray, now president of the Chase Federal Bank in Miami. ”It was like watching a pornographic movie. I had to turn away.” The condo projects, he said, were ”half-built, dilapidated, poorly constructed. It was a mess.” Gray says he knew the risk to the thrift system presented by such commercial ventures. He knew the problems at Empire. But until that moment, it had all been academic.

”I couldn’t believe anything could be so crooked. And then it hit me: What if it was happening somewhere else?”

The scheme, however, had already metastasized. As many as nine Texas savings institutions had lent millions to the I-30 developers, some of them for projects outside the I-30 corridor. Groups of I-30 investors, inspired by the Empire formula, ”did” deals in other cities in Texas and in other states.

PERHAPS THE BEST MEASURE OF deregulation is the bitter irony of what it has become. Although it had been designed to preserve home lending, its perverse practitioners all but abandoned the home loan in favor of office towers, condominiums and shopping malls. Deregulation was intended to preserve thrift deposits;, instead, it is witnessing record runs.

Deregulation is now a vigorous and necessary reregulation, as Federal agencies become custodians of hundreds of financial institutions, stockholders-in-due-course of bankrupt companies, and owners and liquidators of one of the nation’s largest portfolios of real estate, including the I-30 condos owned by Empire Savings.

Having substituted rigid regulations with the laws of the marketplace, deregulation fostered a wave of white-collar criminality that may take another decade to resolve. Instead of saving the thrift system, deregulation has instead raised the legitimate question of whether the thrift system will survive at all.

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