Bank fraud sentence handed down
Bank fraud sentence handed down
Paul Ryan, 49, of Torrance, and a former loan officer for Broadway Federal Bank was sentenced to 18 months in prison and fined $354,000 for a fraud scheme that nearly broke the bank.

Ryan worked for the bank between 2007 and 2010 as a loan officer. During that time, Ryan engaged in a lending scheme that involved making loans to churches around the country. Prior to Ryan’s arrival, the bank had made loans to local churches only. Within two years of his arrival, Ryan had tripled the number of church loans held by the bank. By 2009, nearly one-quarter of the banks outstanding loans had been made to churches.

Churches began defaulting on the loans, and by 2011, more than half of the bank’s non-performing loans belonged to churches. As federal regulators began to investigate the high number of loan failures, they discovered that Ryan had worked with loan brokers to make loans to organizations that did not meet the bank’s lending standards.

Further investigation uncovered a kickback scheme in which Ryan received payments from brokers in exchange for making loans to unqualified borrowers. Often, documentation accompanying the loan applications was falsified. Bank officials believe that Ryan authorized as much as $90 million in loans, resulting in losses of as much as $30 million for the bank.

Multiple federal agencies, including the FDIC, the FBI, the IRS and the Office of the Special Inspector for the Troubled Asset Relieve Program, became involved in the investigation. The loan broker who partnered with Ryan, Chester Peggese, pleaded guilty to bank fraud in 2015 and served 12 months in federal prison. He was also ordered to repay more than $4.3 million in losses to the bank.

Los Angeles Fraud Attorney

If you’ve been arrested for federal fraud of any kind, you need the assistance of an experienced federal fraud attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has practiced criminal defense law exclusively for more than 30 years, and takes federal fraud cases around the country. He also provides exceptional criminal defense in state courts, and takes cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California.

Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County SSA Fraud/Identity Theft case.

Photo Credit: Shannon O’Toole, via

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