NEW YORK - A hostile suitor is claiming that Carver Bancorp Inc. schemed to ensure the reelection of some of its board members by selling an 8.25% stake to sympathetic investment firms.The plaintiff is Boston Bank of Commerce, which has been attempting to buy Carver and which has put two candidates up for election to the $421 million minority-owned thrift's board. Bank of Commerce is seeking to "sterilize" or nullify the preferred shares Carver recently sold to Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co and Provender Capital Group, both of New York.

Bank of Commerce, a $103 million-asset, minority-owned company with a 7% stake in Carver, said in the complaint filed Wednesday in Delaware Chancery Court that the stock was placed in the investment houses' hands because Deborah Wright, Carver's chief executive officer, has close ties to executives at Morgan Stanley and Provender.

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