Former President Of Just Failed Park Avenue Bank Arrested On Bank Bribery, Embezzlement And Fraud Charges

On FDIC Failure Friday, one of the odd names to make the list of bank failures was New York's very own Park Avenue Bank, whose president Charles Antonucci in March of 2009 was trumpeting the bank's "resilience" by saying "I don't need TARP money" and as result declined to accept taxpayer bailouts. Certainly with Friday's failure, Antonucci's statement seems a little short-sighted. What is more relevant, is that it was just announced that Antonucci, who was the bank's president from June 2004 to October 2009 has been arrested on bank bribery, embezzlement and fraud charges. Makes you wonder just how safe the "safe" banks are, if only the bailout recipients are doing so-so in the current environment (presumably, without any outright fraud disclosed just yet among the TBTFs).

From BNO Breaking News:

The former President of The Park Avenue Bank in Manhattan, which was closed by regulators last Friday, has been arrested on fraud charges, prosecutors said on Monday.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York said Charles Antonucci was arrested on allegations of self-dealing, bank bribery, embezzlement, and fraud on the New York State Banking Department, FDIC and TARP.

And some more from Reuters:

A former president of a privately-held New York bank, Park Avenue Bank, was arrested Monday on charges including bank bribery, embezzlement and fraud, a federal prosecutor said.

A source familiar with the case identified the banker as Charles Antonucci, who was president of the bank from June 2004 to October 2009.

On Friday, state regulators closed Park Avenue Bank, which had assets of $520.1 million and deposits of $494.5 million at the end of 2009, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

The charges against the former bank president include self-dealing, bank bribery, embezzlement and fraud on the New York state banking department, FDIC and the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the statement by Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said.

His office said U.S. officials were to disclose more details at a press conference at 1 p.m. (1700 GMT) on Monday.

In November the bank applied for a bailout of less than $12 million under the TARP program but withdrew its application over concerns about restrictions on banks that receive taxpayer money, bank chairman Donald Glascoff said on March 10.

This is truly not surprising: in the corrupt world of Wall Street banking, it appears that rampant criminality has long since become the norm, with selective enforcement here and there to make it seem that perpetrators get punished. The next question: where's Fuldo.