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Alleged kiting scheme targeted Hartselle bank

By Staff
Staff Reports, Hartselle Enquirer
A Madison man is being charged with conspiracy to defraud in connection with an alleged check kiting scheme which targets included a Hartselle bank.
Bryant M. Hovis, 36, was indicted by a federal grant jury last week. Hovis, a former vice-president and loan officer at North Alabama Bank, is accused of participating in conspiracy to defraud Community Bank of Hartselle, North Alabama Bank of Decatur, Bank of Huntsville, Union Planters Bank of Decatur and Community Spirit Bank of Red Bay.
"The scheme involved check kiting and the presentation of false financial statements for loans by certain conspiring North Alabama car dealers," said Alice Martin, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama.
According to Martin, two of those car dealers, Greg Steenson of Hartselle and David Riggs of Decatur, have previously pled guilty to bank fraud conspiracy charges. Another car dealer, William Clingerman of Decatur, is being sought by law enforcement.
The indictment alleges Hovis received kickback payments from the car dealers in return for his influence at the bank. He is also charged with failing to report the kickback payments he received, totalling more than $80,000, as income on his 1998 and 1999 income tax returns.

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