Monday, May 21, 2018

St. Tammany contractor charged with conspiracy to defraud bank

Posted: Tuesday, May 15, 2018 | Views: 1819

St. Tammany contractor charged with conspiracy to defraud bank
St. Tammany Contractor Charged with Conspiracy to Defraud First NBC Bank

NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that JEFFREY DUNLAP, age 44, a resident of Slidell, Louisiana and owner of Phoenix Civil Contractors was charged yesterday with conspiracy to defraud First NBC Bank, the New Orleans-based bank that failed in April 2017.

According to the Bill of Information, from March 2009 through April 2017, Phoenix Civil Contractors (“PCC”) and JEFFREY DUNLAP had a banking relationship with First NBC Bank. During that timeframe, Bank President A acted as the loan officer for PCC and JEFFREY DUNLAP, reviewing and approving new loans, lines of credit, and advances and incremental increases for PCC and JEFFREY DUNLAP. The largest loan was a revolving line of credit (“LOC”) secured by a borrowing base of eighty-percent of PCC’s accounts receivable. At the direction of Bank President A, JEFFREY DUNLAP submitted false financial statements and inflated accounts receivable on behalf of PCC to justify incremental increases on the LOC. Bank President A caused these false supporting documents to be placed in First NBC Bank’s records.

As alleged in the Bill of Information, the purpose of the conspiracy was for the defendant, JEFFREY DUNLAP, Bank President A, and others to unjustly enrich themselves, disguise the true financial status of PCC, and conceal the accurate performance of PCC’s LOC. The defendant, JEFFREY DUNLAP, Bank President A, and others sought to obtain money from First NBC Bank, in part, so that Bank President A and Owner B could continue using PCC on projects involving Company A, which was co-owned by Bank President A and Owner B. As a result, Bank President A and Owner B benefited by not having to use their own funds to pay PCC for work involving Company A.

The false and fraudulent financial statements, accounts receivable, and other documents submitted by JEFFREY DUNLAP disguised PCC’s true financial condition from First NBC Bank, bank regulators, investors, and others. By April 28, 2017, First NBC Bank had advanced approximately $22 million to PCC on the LOC, based on these false statements.

If found guilty, JEFFREY DUNLAP could face up to 30 years’ imprisonment, a fine of more than $1 million, five years of supervised release, and a special assessment of $100.

U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans stated that a Bill of Information is merely an accusation and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of Inspector General, and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Office of Inspector General. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sharan E. Lieberman and Hayden Brockett are in charge of the prosecution.