A former bank executive in Georgia has pleaded guilty to charges of defrauding a bank that had received funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program.
Gary Patton Hall Jr., who served as its chief executive, has accepted liability for obtaining money and other assets from Tifton Banking Company while carrying out a scheme to falsify the bank's financial condition. Hall did so by replacing troubled loans with new loans, Christy Romero, the special inspector general for Tarp, said in a Friday press release.
Hall's actions, which he carried out over five years starting in 2005, cost the bank and the Small Business Administration about $2.8 million, according to Romero and U.S. Attorney Michael Moore.
In 2010 regulators closed Tifton and named the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. as its receiver. The failure cost taxpayers $3.8 million, which the bank had obtained through Tarp, Romero charged. U.S. law specifically prohibits fraud against financial institutions that have received Tarp funds.
A lawyer for Hall did not respond immediately to a request for comment.
Hall, who entered his plea in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, based in Macon, faces 65 months in prison. He is scheduled to appears before Judge Hugh Lawson for a sentencing hearing scheduled for September 30.