Bank Of New England And Suspected Gambler Charged With Currency Violations
BOSTON (AP) _ The Bank of New England, the region’s second-largest bank, was indicted Tuesday on federal charges of failing to report $817,200 in cash transactions by a man facing gambling charges.
A federal grand jury returned a 43-count indictment accusing the bank, two of its head tellers, and James V. McDonough, 51, a former customer of the bank, with scheming to conceal a series of 36 cash transactions from the Internal Revenue Service.
One of the tellers and a bank officer were also charged with perjury.
McDonough, of suburban Walpole, faces gambling charges in Suffolk County, where prosecutors allege he helped run a large-scale, interstate gambling ring using computers.
The bank said it would fight the charges.
″This bank never willfully violated any banking laws,″ bank president Richard D. Driscoll said in a written statement.
″All of the currency charges relate to a former customer’s pattern of cashing checks, each under $10,000. The amount requiring notice to the IRS is $10,000 and above,″ Driscoll said.
He said the bank brought the matter to the attention of the U.S. attorney following an internal review and has cooperated with the federal investigation.
″We are very surprised now to learn that this bank and the two tellers are charged with deliberately failing to add all checks cashed on the same day - so they might be reported as one transaction,″ the bank’s statement said.
At a press conference, Driscoll said McDonough had presented himself to the bank as a small businessman, telling bank employees ″that among other things he installed burglar alarms.″
The charges come eight months after the Bank of Boston pleaded guilty to failing to file reports with the IRS on more than $1 billion in cash transactions with foreign banks between 1980 and 1984.
Weld said his office has ″has a number of bank matters that are still being pursued.″
The indictment charged the bank, supervisory head tellers Carol A. Orlandella, 35, of Revere and Patricia A. Murphy, 31, of Winthrop each with engaging in an unlawful scheme to conceal from the IRS at least 36 withdrawals of more than $10,000 in cash. McDonough was charged with aiding and abetting that scheme. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The bank and McDonough were charged in 36 counts each of willfully failing to file currency transaction reports, which are used by the federal government to track laundered money. Each count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $500,000 fine.
Ms. Murphy and Ms. Orlandello were each charged with two misdemeanor counts of failing to file currency transaction reports.
Ms. Orlandello and bank assistant vice president Carol S. Cohen, 40, of Salem with perjury for their testimony in the investigation. The charge carries a maximum five-year prison term and a $250,000 fine.
The government claims that Ms. Orlandello accepted four envelopes containing $100 each from McDonough and lied to a grand jury about it.