Ex-Wilmington Trust Loan Officer Accused of Bank Fraud

A former loan officer for Wilmington Trust Corp. told a federal judge he’s guilty of conspiracy to commit criminal bank fraud in connection with unauthorized loans that helped cause the bank’s collapse.

Joseph Terranova, 45, the ex-vice president of the bank’s commercial real estate division, wrongly helped extend $373 million in loans that weren’t reported as past-due, according to a charge sheet provided by Delaware U.S. Attorney Charles M. Oberly III.

U.S. District Judge Gregory M. Sleet today asked Terranova at a hearing if he understood the penalties he might face, including as long as five years in prison.

“Yes sir, I do,” Terranova answered.

Wilmington Trust, once Delaware’s largest bank, was a recipient of bailout money from the U.S. Troubled Asset Relief Program. It was bought in 2011 by Buffalo-based M&T Bank Corp. (MTB)

The case is U.S. v. Terranova, 13-cr-00039, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Phil Milford in Wilmington, Delaware at pmilford@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.

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