Bernie and Jane Sanders Under Investigation for Possible Bank Fraud
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
The Department of Justice (DOJ), FBI, and FDIC are investigating whether Jane Sanders committed bank fraud while serving as president of the now-defunct Burlington College (from 2004 – 2011). Bernie Sanders is a person of interest, explained below.
Under her leadership, enrollment and donations dropped. In 2010, she bought 33 acres of land to expand the school. The strategy failed to increase enrollments.
In 2014, Burlington College was placed under probation. In 2016, it declared bankruptcy and closed down.
Mrs. Sanders allegedly falsified loan application documents for financing to expand the campus, claiming Corinne Bove Maietta pledged $1 million to the school over a five-year period.
According to an FDIC investigator, she never agreed to pledge any amount while still alive. She’s aged 83 – agreeing only to donate an unspecified posthumous sum.
Loan application documents show Mrs. Sanders said Maietta agreed to make a series of cash donations. Her alleged pledge along with others were used as collateral.
Maietta told FDIC investigators she was astonished to learn how she was improperly used. “You can’t borrow money on the future,” she said. “That doesn’t exist. They had me (donating) in increments. No, never.”
She never signed an agreement to donate anything. Burlington College wasn’t included in her will until around a year after Mrs. Sanders’ land purchase.
“I remember Jane asking if I would sign something, and I said I never sign anything. You’ll have to go through my accountant,” she explained.
After donating less than $100,000, she agreed to leave the college an unspecified amount in her will. “I never told them how much, and I never signed anything…It was all on my word,” she said.
According to two former college employees contacted by the FBI, information in Mrs. Sanders loan agreement with People’s United Bank is under federal investigation for possible fraud.
In January 2016, Republican attorney Brady Toensing asked the US Attorney for the District of Vermont and the FDIC inspector general to investigate whether Mrs. Sanders committed fraud by falsifying information on her loan application – according to Carol Moore, Burlington College’s last president.
People’s United Bank provided Mrs. Sanders with a $10.7 million loan to finance her land purchase, lakefront property to expand the Burlington College campus.
Senator Sanders is a person of interest. According to Politico, a “letter to federal prosecutors in early 2016 alleged (his) office had pressured the bank to approve the loan application submitted by” his wife.
The letter said “(i)mproper pressure by a United States Senator is a serious ethical violation.”
So far, he hasn’t commented publicly on the controversy surrounding his wife. His involvement leaves him vulnerable to possible Senate censure on ethics violations.
It could be worse if federal investigators claim he was complicit in his wife’s loan application deception – if it’s determined to be bank fraud.
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