Feds charge 4 connected to failed California bank

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Updated: 4/10/2014 11:05 pm

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Four men with connections to a failed Northern California bank have been charged with fraud, money laundering and other criminal charges.

The U.S. Attorney's office in San Francisco announced Thursday that Marin County authorities had arrested developer Bijan Madjlessi, lawyer David Lonich and two former executives of the now-defunct Sonoma Valley Bank, Sean Cutting and Brian Melland.

The four are accused of conspiring before the bank's closure in 2010 to loan Madjlessi a little more than $4 million so he could purchase a $30 million construction loan on which he had defaulted. The loan was being held by Freddie Mac and Madjlessi was barred from bidding on it.

Federal prosecutors allege the purchase was carried out by a straw buyer.

All four were arrested and released on $250,000 bail on Wednesday.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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