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Change of plea for Pierce Commercial Bank executive?

Post by John Gillie / The News Tribune on Sep. 17, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
September 17, 2012 3:55 pm

Shawn Portmann, the former Pierce Commercial Bank senior vice president charged with a mortgage loan scheme that brought down the bank, may change his not guilty plea Tuesday in Tacoma federal court.

A change of plea hearing has been set for 3 p.m. before U.S. District Judge Benjamin Settle at the Union Station Federal Courthouse.

Two of Portmann’s co-defendants, Adam S. Voelker and Jeanette R. Salsi, have already pleaded guilty in the case.

Portmann was named in 30 indictments in connection with a mortgage loan scheme that federal prosecutors claimed were based on false documents. More than 100 of the 270 loans involved in the scheme defaulted, prosecutors claimed causing a loss of more than $10 million to Pierce Commercial.

Portmann was accused of conspiracy, false statements on loan applications, false statements to the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, mail fraud, wire fraud, bank embezzlement and transactional money laundering.

His trial had been set for early November.

In addition to the loan issues, Portmann was charged with bank embezzlement for billing Pierce Commercial Bank for advertising he allegedly never provided. Portmann charged the bank for $150,000 worth of advertising, but used some $68,000 to buy a BMW car, the government claimed.

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