A guilty plea by the man who improperly obtained a multimillion-dollar loan from Signet Banking Corp. may have closed the criminal investigation but it does not alleviate the long-term damage to the Richmond, Va., bank's reputation, analysts said.

Former Philip Morris Cos. employee Edward J. Reiners pleaded guilty Wednesday to money laundering and bank fraud charges related to a scheme to bilk Signet and seven other financial institutions of more than $350 million.

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