Disgraced runner Scott Tucker took over Ferraris in payday loan scam conviction

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Among the many charges brought against former racing driver Scott Tucker, the convicted payday loan scammer should also be credited with being the most prolific generator of crime and punishment news in auto racing.

Sentenced in January to 16 years and eight months in prison, and ordered to pay a fine of 3.5 billion dollars for the predatory lending practices of the multiple payday lending companies he operated, Tucker’s precious bonus – the dozens of race cars purchased for his former Level 5 Racing sports car team – have already been liquidated in ‘an auction to recover some of his ill-gotten goods. wins.

And in a new development, its rich collection of personal cars and other lavish items are being sought after by the government to satisfy a portion of the massive debt attributed to it by the US attorney’s office in Manhattan.

According to Tucker’s hometown Kansas City Star newspaper, “The forfeiture order asks the government for possession of several Tucker’s bank accounts, several Porsche and Ferrari cars, high-value jewelry and two residential properties owned by Tucker – one in Aspen, Colorado, and the another in Leawood near the Hallbrook Country Club. “

Tucker, who was taken into custody last month to begin his extended federal stint, is currently serving a sentence in a Philadelphia jail pending whether the appeal to overturn his conviction will be heard.

The racing team, Tucker’s road cars, homes and personal fortune being gradually returned to the government in the form of foreign currency, the main bank that facilitated its payday loans was also asked to join in the financial pain. .

In a new ruling on Thursday, the U.S. bank agreed to pay a fine of $ 528 million for deliberately circumventing two regulations in order to take advantage of money coming in and out of its business through Tucker’s payday operation.

USB has been charged with “two Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) breaches by its subsidiary, the US Bank National Association (the Bank), the fifth largest bank in the United States), for deliberately failing to put in place an adequate anti-money laundering program. (AML) and by deliberately failing to file a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) ”, according to an announcement made by Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

The fine will be collected in two stages, and provided the USB behaves in a legal manner within the next two years, the charges could be cleared. In the US attorney’s findings, USB’s efforts to help Tucker bypass banking regulations were clear and ongoing:

From October 2011 to November 2013, the Bank willfully failed to timely report the suspicious banking activities of Scott Tucker, its long-time client, despite being informed that Tucker had used the Bank to launder the proceeds of the bank. ‘an illegal and fraudulent payday loan program using a series of fake bank accounts opened in the name of companies nominally owned by various Native American tribes (the “Tribal Corporations”). From 2008 to 2012, Tucker’s companies made approximately five million loans to customers across the country, while generating more than $ 2 billion in revenue and hundreds of millions of dollars in profits. Most of this money went through accounts Tucker kept at the Bank.

USB employees tasked with handling the ongoing activity of Tucker’s accounts ignored numerous red flags that Tucker was using the tribes to conceal his ownership of the accounts. For example, Tucker spent large sums of money from accounts in the name of tribal corporations on personal items, including tens of millions of dollars for a vacation home in Aspen and for the professional Ferrari racing team of Tucker. USB has also received subpoenas from regulators investigating Tucker’s businesses. In September 2011, after news outlets issued reports examining Tucker’s history and questionable business practices, the Bank examined Tucker’s accounts, and an AML investigator reported to supervisors, among others, that “ it seems Mr. Tucker is a pretty slippery person “who” is really hiding behind a bunch of shell companies. ” Based on its findings, the Bank closed the accounts on behalf of the tribal corporations but did not file a SAR.

The Bank also left Tucker’s non-tribal accounts open and opened new ones, allowing more than $ 176 million more of his illegal payday activity to flow into the Bank. Although it also learned that a Federal Trade Commission lawsuit against Tucker and the Tribal Corporations was filed in April 2012 against Tucker and the Tribal Corporations, the Bank did not file a SAR regarding Tucker until it ” received a subpoena by this office in November 2013.

Prior to his incarceration, Tucker – in a cheeky display – appeared as a guest on the Dinner With Racers podcast where he introduced himself as an innocent target of federal prosecutors. If perpetuating this false narrative wasn’t enough, Tucker also appeared in a new Netflix documentary series, Dirty Money, last summer as he was under investigation for the crimes he was quickly convicted of. to have committed.

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