OCC & NYDFS Investigations Into Sterling National Bank’s Shenanigans Worry Customers and Share Holders
MFI-Miami has learned that shareholders and deposit holders at Hudson Valley Bank are having grave concerns about the bank’s merger with Sterling National Bank. Sterling is now under investigation by both the OCC and the NYDFS.
Sterling and Hudson Valley Bank agreed to a merger pending shareholder approval in November. Yet, the investigations by the OCC and the NYDFS into Sterling could delay the merger or shatter it all together.
Hudson Valley Bank shareholders are also not the only ones concerned. Several Sterling customers claim they plan on closing their accounts at Sterling. They were also not happy hearing about the investigations.
Former Sterling National Bank customer Bill Youngblood filed the complaints.
Youngblood’s complaints filed with the OCC and NYDFS allege that an employee of Sterling National Bank under the supervision AVP Dino Saracino improperly withdrew money out of Youngblood’s corporate business accounts. Saracino then applied the funds to Youngblood’s residential mortgage.
Sterling National Bank’s actions also caused dozens of checks written by Youngblood to bounce costing Youngblood thousands of dollars in NSF fees. The bank allegedly did this to reap thousands of dollars in NSF fees from Youngblood.
Sterling Jerks Around Youngblood Some More
Bill Youngblood began negotiating with Sterling National Bank to modify the first and second mortgages on his residence while renegotiating a refinance of his loan on his commercial property in Harriman, New York.
The complaints also allege that Saracino assured Youngblood a deal was close at hand in July of 2013. The bank hired Blustein, Shapiro, Rich & Barone, LLP to foreclose on Youngblood.
Saracino informed Youngblood in April of 2014 that Sterling would modify the commercial loan. Sterling wanted him to deposit $20,000 into a Sterling National Bank account. Youngblood asked for term sheets or a copy of the new mortgage and note. Saracino refused to supply Youngblood with a term sheet. Saracino then demanded the deposit of $20,000.
Attorneys from Blustein, Shapiro, Rich & Barone, LLP agreed to settle the foreclosure action if Youngblood gave them $100,000 in February.
After receiving a certified check for $100,000 from Youngblood’s attorney, Blustein, Shapiro, Rich & Barone, LLP informed Youngblood that Sterling National Bank had changed their mind and wanted to continue with litigation and keep the $100,000. As a result, Youngblood demanded the check be returned.