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CUNA Senior Staff See 3.5% Salary Increases

WASHINGTON-CUNA's top executives received pay raises averaging 3.5% in 2002, as the trade association was reporting a fiscal year loss for the fourth time in the last seven years. CUNA President and CEO Dan Mica, who earns more than twice as much as any other CUNA executive, was paid a $697,040 salary last year, up 2.3% from the year before, and total compensation of $776,990, including retirement benefits. Senior Vice President Pete Crear was the next highest paid CUNA executive, earning a salary of $294,107, up 3.5%, and total compensation of $356,149. Richard McBride, executive assistant to Mica, earned $269,405 in salary, up 4.2%, and total compensation of $310,758; General Counsel Eric Richard earned $260,225, up 3.52%, and total compensation of $299,790; and Chief Financial Officer Mary Meixelsperger (formerly Wolfenberger) earned $199,241, up 11.9% (2001 bonus deferred to 2002), and total compensation of $224,318.

CUNA reported a net loss for 2002 of $2 million, the second loss in a row and fourth in the past seven years.

Well-Armed Suspects Nabbed In New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS-Two suspects in an armed robbery at NOME FCU last week have been captured, following a gunfight with police near a local high school. The suspects, identified as brothers Lionel and Terrance Howard, began firing AK-47 assault rifles at police after they were cornered when they jumped from their getaway car after it crashed. The suspects had had magazines taped together for seamless reloading and wore full body armor, police said. The school was placed on lockdown and no one was injured.

2 More Nigerian Scam Victims

BAY CITY, Mich.-An online fraud scheme perpetrated by Nigerian residents cost at least two local credit union members thousands of dollars in losses. Both victims, Jeannie Richardson, a member of United Bay City CU, and Angela Fortin, a member of Catholic FCU, were trying to sell merchandise over the Internet and were told by individuals in Nigeria they would pay with a cashier's check that exceeded the cost of the items, asking that the excess funds be sent to them. The victims cashed the checks at their credit union, then wired the extra funds back to the perpetrators, before learning the cashiers checks were fake. Richardson lost $3,000 on the scheme, Fortin $5,500.

Solar-Powered ATMs Set To Dawn

DAYTON, Ohio-NCR Corp. said it is preparing to unveil an ATM that is powered by the sun. The solar powered machine is called Handy Amounts in Remote Places, or HARP, because it is geared for out-of-the way locations. Another potential use is for transient locations, such as fairs, concerts or sporting events. The ATMs are to debut in India and China before coming to the United States. The machines are run on batteries that are recharged by the sun and can run for three days without sun.

Judge Rejects Convict's Pleas

PENSACOLA, Fla.-A federal judge rejected the sobbing pleas of a 30-year-old woman for leniency and sentenced her last week to 25 months in prison for her role in a scheme to pass a phony $6-million check on Monsanto Employees CU.

Tammy Neely, of Destin, asked the judge to keep her out of jail so she could care for her two-year-old son. But the judge dismissed her pleas, saying Neely needed to be punished for her scheme, which included conning local institutions out of $340,000 in fraudulent loans.

Prosecutors said Neely tried to write the $6-million check from the credit union account of her mother, claiming it was backed by the sale of a vintage baseball for $8 million.

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