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CU System briefs (07/21/2011)
* FRESNO, Calif. (7/22/11)—A California man was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for armed bank robbery stemming from a series of robberies in 2009 that included two credit unions. Michael Minjarez, 40, of Stockton, was convicted in the robberies of Central State CU, Stockton, on Aug. 28, 2009; of Valley First CU, Madera, on Oct. 5, 2009, and three robberies at two banks in the Central Valley area in September 2009. He was sentenced to life in prison under the federal “three strikes” law ( July 18) ... * MACON, Ga. (7/22/11)—A former credit union employee, Kimberly V. Brown, 35, of Macon, Ga., was indicted on charges of identity theft while she was employed at Robins FCU, Warner Robins, Ga. The charges include aggravated identity theft, theft by a credit union employee, and making false statements to a federally insured institution (Macon Telegraph July 21). From October 2007 through March 2008, Brown allegedly applied for three loans and five credit cards using stolen identities and false information, and allegedly obtained cash advances on the credit lines and spent the money as well as pocketed proceeds from the loans. An audit three years ago discovered suspicious activity, according to the indictment, which was filed in a U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia … * TULSA, Okla. (7/22/11)—A Tulsa man charged with Monday’s robbery and false bomb threat at Tulsa (Okla.) FCU, allegedly told the Federal Bureau of Investigation that he didn’t remember robbing the credit union but realized he must have done so when he found a large sum of money blowing around in his car while he was driving. Steven Paul Wooten, 41, called the FBI and took responsibility for the holdup, said an FBI affidavit. The incident occurred when a man entered the credit union, put a briefcase on the teller counter and told the teller there was a bomb inside. He fled with about $3,000 and left the briefcase. The credit union was evacuated and a bomb squad determined the briefcase was empty. Photographs of the robbery that appeared in the media prompted a number of calls identifying Wooten. When he was questioned by family and friends, he contacted the FBI ( Tulsa World … * CHARLOTTE, N.C. (7/22/11)—Carolina Postal CU based in Charlotte, N.C., is spearheading a drive for donations on behalf of a Hickory area teenage member paralyzed July 11 in a fall during a rodeo in Oklahoma. Kelly Blanton suffered a broken neck and spinal cord injuries while practicing for the International Finals Youth Rodeo competition in Shawnee, Okla. The fall occurred when her horse bucked during the breakaway roping event. The story was widely reported in the North Carolina media, said the North Carolina Credit Union League. Carolina Postal is collecting donations throughout its branch system and encouraging other credit unions in the Hickory area to take up collections. Hickory Springs FCU has joined the effort, and Postal said other credit unions plan to join as well … * SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (7/22/11)—David Toepp, president/CEO of Mortgage Center LLC, a credit union service organization based in Southfield, Mich., has announced he will retire during first quarter of 2012, after more than 30 years service in the mortgage industry. Toepp has been with Mortgage Center for 16 years. Under Toepp’s leadership, the CUSO has grown to service $1.6 billion in mortgage loans for 75 credit unions in Michigan, according to an announcement from Board Chairman John Normandeau. Mortgage Center was founded in 1990 to provide mortgage products exclusively for credit union members ... * WASHINGTON (7/22/11)--James T. Molloy, former Congressional FCU board chairman and U.S. House of Representatives Doorkeeper, died Tuesday of complications in a Rochester, N.Y., hospital. He was 75. In 1970, Molloy became a member of the credit union and its board of directors. In 1973, he became chairman and served continuously for 35 years, according to the Maryland and District of Columbia Credit Union Association. Molloy served as a director of the D.C. Credit Union League board and chairman of its Scholarship and Awards Committee. He gave the invocation at many of the Credit Union National Association's Governmental Affairs Conferences. Although he officially stepped down in 2009 from its board chairmanship, "he remained an advocate for the credit union until his final days," the credit union said on its website. He is survived by his wife, a daughter and son-in-law, and two grandchildren. Services will be Saturday in Orchard Park, N.Y. …


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