DOB: Bulletin 2646 - November 7, 2014

The Department of Banking News Bulletin 

Bulletin # 2646
Week Ending November 7, 2014

This bulletin constitutes the only official notification you will receive from this office concerning any of the following applications.  Any observations you may have are solicited.  Any comments should be in writing to Howard F. Pitkin, Banking Commissioner, Department of Banking, 260 Constitution Plaza, Hartford, CT 06103-1800.  Written comments will be considered only if they are received within ten days from the date of this bulletin.

STATE BANK ACTIVITY
Branch Activity

Section 36a-145 of the Connecticut General Statutes requires certain applications for a branch, or for a limited branch at which loans will be made, be accompanied by a plan detailing how adequate services to meet the banking needs of all community residents will be provided.  Plans are submitted when such applications are filed and are available for public inspection and comment at this Department for a period of 30 days.  Questions concerning branch activity should be directed to the Financial Institutions Division, (860) 240-8180.

Date

Bank

Location

Activity

10/20/14
Liberty Bank
Middletown
2518 Whitney Avenue
Hamden, CT  06518

Opening

Date

10/31/14
 
Eastern Savings Bank
Norwich
*  220 West Town Street
    Norwich, CT  06360
Filed
 
10/30/14
 
United Bank
Rockville
**10 Titus Road
    Unit 2, Ground Floor North
    Washington Depot, CT  06794
Filed
 
 
11/04/14
 
Farmington Bank
Farmington
**138 Memorial Avenue
    West Springfield, MA  01089
Approved
 
* Erroneously listed as a Loan Production Office in Bulletin 2645. This is a full service branch.
**Loan Production Office

Interstate Loan Production Office

On November 4, 2014, pursuant to Section 36a-412(d) of the Connecticut General Statutes, Bank of England, an Arkansas banking corporation with its main office in England, Arkansas, received approval to establish a loan production office at 85 Wall Street, Suite 1A, Madison, Connecticut.


CONSUMER CREDIT DIVISION ACTIVITY
Notice of Intent to Issue Order to Cease and Desist
and Notice of Intent to Impose Civil Penalty

On October 30, 2014, the Commissioner issued a Notice of Intent to Issue Order to Cease and Desist, Notice of Intent to Impose Civil Penalty and Notice of Right to Hearing (“Notice”) in the Matter of:  Guaranty Federal Financial Corporation d/b/a Guaranty Federal (NMLS # 2624) (“Respondent”), West Hartford, Connecticut.  The Notice was the result of an investigation by the Consumer Credit Division.  The Notice alleges that Respondent failed to file certain annual information required on the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry, in violation of Section 36a-534b(c)(3) of the Connecticut General Statutes, as amended by Public Act 14-89.  Respondent was afforded an opportunity to request a hearing on the allegations set forth in the Notice.

 Consent Order

On October 30, 2014, the Commissioner entered into a Consent Order with Equity America Mortgage Services, Inc. (NMLS # 8780) (“Equity America Mortgage Services”), Manchester, New Hampshire.  The Consent Order was based on an investigation by the Consumer Credit Division.  As a result of such investigation, on May 15, 2014, the Commissioner issued a Notice of Intent to Issue Order to Cease and Desist, Notice of Intent to Impose Civil Penalty and Notice of Right to Hearing.  The Commissioner alleged that Equity America Mortgage Services failed to file certain annual information required by mortgage call reports, in violation of Section 36a-534b(c)(3) of the Connecticut General Statutes.  As part of the Consent Order, Equity America Mortgage Services requested surrender of its mortgage broker license.

Order to Cease and Desist and Order Imposing Civil Penalty

On October 30, 2014, the Commissioner issued an Order to Cease and Desist and Order Imposing Civil Penalty (“Order”) in the Matter of:  S&S Health Group LLC d/b/a Financial Link (“Financial Link”), Boynton Beach, Florida, Sean P. Miller (“Miller”) and Stephen E. De Navea (“De Navea”) (collectively, “Respondents”), Florida.  The basis of the Order was that Financial Link:  offered debt negotiation by a direct mailer that had the capacity or tendency to mislead Connecticut consumers as to Financial Link’s affiliation, connection or association with a bank, in violation of Section 36-56a(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes, offered to engage in debt negotiation in this state without the required license, in violation of Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes in effect prior to October 1, 2011, and engaged in debt negotiation in this state without obtaining the required license, in violation of Section 36a 671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes in effect prior to October 1, 2011.  In addition, the Order found that Miller and De Navea, individually, engaged in debt negotiation in this state without the required license, in violation of Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes.  Financial Link was ordered to cease and desist from violating Sections 36a-56a(a) and 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes, and to pay a civil penalty of $200,000.  Miller and De Navea, individually, were ordered to cease and desist from violating Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes and to each pay a civil penalty of $100,000.  In addition, the Order to Make Restitution previously issued against Respondents on June 24, 2014, remains in effect and became permanent on July 17, 2014.

SECURITIES AND BUSINESS INVESTMENTS DIVISION
Consent Order Entered

On November 7, 2014, the Banking Commissioner entered a Consent Order (Docket No. CF-14-8080-S) with respect to Orion Capital LLC of Watertown, Connecticut and Herman Wayne Gibson, the firm’s control person.  The Consent Order followed a May 8, 2014 Order to Cease and Desist, Notice of Intent to Fine and Notice of Right to Hearing against the respondents.  The May 8, 2014 action had alleged violations of Sections 36b-16, 36b-4(a), 36b-6 and 36b-23 of the Connecticut Uniform Securities Act.  According to the May 8, 2014 action, Orion Capital, LLC had been created to process conventional loans for Pegasus Investment Group, LLC, a mortgage broker controlled by Gibson and previously licensed by the department, and that, from at least September 20, 2009 forward, the respondents offered and sold unregistered notes issued by Orion Capital, LLC.  The Consent Order acknowledged that the respondents had demonstrated a financial inability to pay the fine that otherwise would have been imposed against them.

The Consent Order barred Herman Wayne Gibson for ten years from 1) transacting business in or from Connecticut as a broker-dealer, agent, investment adviser or investment adviser agent; 2) soliciting or accepting funds for investment purposes from public or private investors in or from Connecticut; and 3) engaging in any activity that would trigger the registration requirements of the Connecticut Uniform Securities Act.  The Consent Order also directed both respondents to cease and desist from regulatory violations.


 Dated:  Wednesday, November 12, 2014

 Howard F. Pitkin
 Banking Commissioner