Manafort's banker banned by OCC

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Stephen Calk, who faces a bribery charge over his bank's loans to President Trump’s onetime campaign chair, has been banned from the industry.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a notice of prohibition on May 24, one day after the unsealing of Calk’s indictment in Manhattan federal court. The banking ban took effect immediately. The OCC’s three-page notice, which was published on the agency’s website last month, was reported earlier Monday by Crain’s Chicago Business.

Until around the time of his indictment, Calk was CEO of The Federal Savings Bank, a $395 million-asset institution that specializes in mortgage lending. His brother John, who previously served as the bank’s vice chairman, is now chairman and chief executive.

Steve Calk is accused of approving multimillion-dollar loans to Paul Manafort in exchange for a potential high-ranking job at the Pentagon. He has pleaded not guilty and been released on a $5 million bond.

Federal prosecutors have also alleged that Calk made false or misleading statements to OCC officials about the bribery scheme and its aftermath, though they have not charged him with the crime of making false statements to government officials.

The ban will remain in effect until either the final disposition of Calk’s court case or until it is terminated by Comptroller Joseph Otting.

In explaining the prohibition notice, the OCC said that negative publicity from the criminal case and the fact that charges involve dishonesty and breach of trust threatened to hurt public confidence in Federal Savings.

“In particular, for those members of the public who transact business with the bank, these circumstances threaten to impair their confidence that the transactions will be conducted lawfully and fairly by the bank,” the notice reads, “and for those members of the public who are depositors at the bank, these circumstances threaten to impair their confidence that their deposits will be used by the bank for lawful and fair transactions.”

Calk had 30 days from when the notice was served to request an informal hearing on the matter. He failed to do so, OCC spokesman Bryan Hubbard said in an email.

A spokesman for Calk’s legal team had no immediate comment.

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