Burglary, Lenwood Drive: On Dec. 12, a Lenwood Drive woman discovered someone had burglarized her home the night before. An arriving officer talked to the woman, who said her husband had recently passed away.
The day after his funeral, the woman noticed car tires marks in her driveway and footprints to the front door, which had been forced open. Missing from the home was a coin collection, jewelry boxes, a flat screen TV, a laptop and more.
The woman said her husbands obituary had been in the paper. There are no suspects. Police are investigating.
Theft, Richard Road: On Dec. 12, police were dispatched to a Richard Road home after contractors remodeling the house discovered equipment valued at $750 was missing from an unlocked garage. Police are investigating.
Theft, Broadview Road: On Dec. 14, police were dispatched to Citizens Bank on Broadview Road regarding a possible fraud incident. Earlier a man driving a black Kia requested a cash advance on a Visa debit card.
An arriving officer ran the cars plates, which came up stolen. There were two men sitting in the car. The driver said he had a concealed carry weapon permit and had a gun inside of the car.
While searching the car, police found several Visa debit cards. It turned out the bank had a fraud alert regarding two men attempting to get cash advances using a netSpend card.
Also, another nearby Citizens bank said earlier that day the men unsuccessfully attempted to get cash advances. The driver, who said the car belonged to a friend, was arrested for receiving stolen property, improper handling of a firearm and complicity to commit a theft.
He was also cited for having a suspended license. The passenger was released.
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Non-food credit growth continued its downward trajectory in the fortnight ended January 6, hitting a multi-year low of 5.1% on a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis, according to data released by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). This marks a worsening from the 5.3% growth figure clocked in the previous fortnight. Non-food credit grew to R73.07 lakh crore during the fortnight.
Food credit recorded positive growth for the first time in four months, rising 6.6% y-o-y to R1.07 lakh crore, as against a 5.3% drop in the fortnight ended December 23. This, however, did little to boost growth in overall bank credit, which rose 5.1% y-o-y — unchanged from the previous fortnight — to R74.13 lakh crore.
Deposits with the banking system rose 14.7% y-o-y during the fortnight under review to R105.84 lakh crore. The number is marginally higher than the previous fortnight’s figure of R105.16 lakh crore. The fortnight ended December 23 had seen a 0.7% dip from the previous fortnight for the first time in two months. Banks had been seeing a steady rise in deposits since the government announced the demonetisation of R500 and R1,000 notes.
The credit-deposit (CD) ratio of the banking system, or the proportion of deposits deployed as loans, rose to 70.04% from 69.87% in the previous fortnight. This is the first time the CD ratio has risen since the fortnight ended November 25. It had been falling successively since demonetisation as banks sat on piles of deposits in an environment of weak credit demand.
Lenders have been banking on interest rate cuts to push demand for credit. The last two weeks have seen banks and housing finance companies slashing lending rates aggressively in an attempt to stoke retail credit demand. The country’s largest lender, State Bank of India (SBI), on January 1 reduced its one-year marginal cost of funds-based lending rate (MCLR) by 90 basis points (bps) to 8% and increased the spread over MCLR for most retail loans. Other lenders have followed suit, bringing down their MCLRs by between 15 and 90 bps.
- The Seafood Industry Research Fund (SIRF) has secured funding to develop technology that can more quickly identify seafood species using closed-tube DNA bar coding, Progressive Grocer reported.
- By creating a tool to prevent product mislabeling and species substitution, SIRF could benefit seafood companies, distributors, retailers, restaurants and consumers alike.
- This tool would be more convenient and more affordable than the US Food and Drug AdministrationsDNA testing, which could make identification testing more accessible to food establishments of all sizes.
Cox was taken to the Hardin County Jail and had not posted bond as of late Thursday afternoon. If convicted, she could face 2 to 10 years in a state prison and a fine. She also could be required to pay restitution.
Sullins said Cox began stealing from the club on June 6 and used the money primarily at the Golden Nugget Casino in Lake Charles and other casinos in Mississippi and Alabama. The thefts began one week after Cox was elected treasurer and given access to the clubs accounts and debit card.
Still looking at her to this day, I cant believe it, said president Randy Eason, who discovered the money was missing on Oct. 18. She went on a vacation across the South with the money.
According to a probable cause affidavit provided by Lt. Joseph Breaux Jr., Cox confessed in October that she began gambling in June of 2016 to relieve stress from work and divorce, and used incredibly poor judgment when her losses were greater than her personal finances could support.
She also made purchases at Wal-Mart and Sams Club and paid for at least one dental appointment using the money, according to the document.
She felt the need to try and fix the situation by gambling more hoping to earn back when she had lost, the affidavit said.
She spent almost $85,000 at the Golden Nugget, according to casino records referenced in the affidavit.
She got the money through ATM withdrawals, cash advances, a few checks and debit card purchases, Sullins said.
Eason said Coxs financial reports at monthly booster club meetings did not indicate a problem, and when asked a question, she always had a good story. They trusted her because she worked for Jasons Deli as a forensic accountant in charge of loss prevention and because her daughter is a leader in the band, he said.
Breaux said that they believe the thefts had nothing to do with her employer. A customer service representative for Jasons Deli said Cox is no longer employed there.
We thought we knew her, but I guess we didnt, said club secretary Trish Volker, who recalled Cox sitting with the board at games and acting normally. She said Cox was able to take the money easily without being noticed because the band and club have almost no activity over the summer. She cleaned out our accounts before school started, and then took everything that came in after, she said.
In the last month, the club has elected a new treasurer and assistant treasurer and implemented new security procedures, including notifications of withdrawals and additional board access to the accounts, Eason said.
With community fundraisers and assistance from area bands, the boosters have raised enough to cover about $38,000 in unpaid bills but are still down about $25,000, he said.
Our lives have been fundraising for the last six weeks, Volker said.
The club typically pays for uniform cleaning, music and fundraising supplies and T-shirts, and supports a band trip to play at Disney World in alternate years. Money set aside for the trip, which is scheduled for March 2018, was taken.
The club is struggling to meet some ongoing expenses, Eason said.
We really should have had their uniforms cleaned before UIL competitions in the next few weeks, a $1,400 expense, but we just cant justify it right now, he said.
The band is performing at local venues and restaurants to raise money, and will be holding its annual fireworks sale in December.
Lori Sell, who served as the clubs treasurer for two years before Cox, said she took the theft personally.
I looked her in the eye, I handed the checkbook to her, I told her you need to be a person of integrity, intelligence and utmost trust to do this job, she said. Ive been in accounting for 25 years. I would never have dreamed of seeing something like this.
Eason said band director Tim Pallone addressed the students about supporting Coxs daughter, who has participated in one of the bands fundraisers.
The band students have come together behind her daughter. … The band kids are like a family, he said.
Farmers who have been unable to harvest their 2016 crops may be eligible for a cash advance under a revised application deadline.
Canadian Canola Growers Association (CCGA) will accept new seeded cash advance applications until March 2017.
“The deadline extension means farmers have a new option for generating cash flow even though they have unharvested crops,” says Rick White, CEO of CCGA. “This deadline change applies equally to farmers already enrolled in the 2016 program, as well as those who are applying for the first time.”
Farmers are still required to meet all existing seeded advance requirements including provision of security, reporting requirements, and repayment deadline.
“In the past we could not issue seeded advances after August 31st,” says Dave Gallant, Director of Operations at CCGA. “This change creates an opportunity for many farmers across the Prairies who were not able to complete harvest this year due to weather difficulties.”
Advances also remain available for grains already harvested and stored in bins.
The advance payments program is a federal loan guarantee program, which provides agricultural producers with access to low-interest cash advances.
The program is part of Agriculture amp; Agri-Food Canada’s suite of business management programs.
Court documents have long suggested prosecutors believed Schmelzer committed the crime to tap into money from his grandmothers $800,000 estate, of which he was a benefactor. During a Wednesday hearing, Assistant States Attorney Bill Engerman offered Abrahamson some details as to how prosecutors believe Schmelzers finances served as a motive. Engerman described Schmelzers financial arrangements with two women – one in Texas, a second in Las Vegas, who he alternately described as prostitutes or escorts. Schmelzer also had taken $22,500 in cash advances on one of Darringtons credit cards over the course of six months in 2013 and 2014.
Engerman noted that Schmelzer, who controlled the family finances, and his wife were gainfully employed. They supported their four kids, and could pay a nanny and the $600-per-month payment on his car. Yet, Schmelzer asked family members for loans at various times and failed to make mortgage payments for several months, leading the family home to go into foreclosure, Engerman said, previewing some of Schmelzers now-ex-wifes expected testimony.
University of Limerick (UL) inventors recently secured funding for the new percussion device that helps remove mucus from the airways and will, they hope, greatly improve the quality of life for cystic fibrosis patients.
Ireland has the highest incidence of CF in the world and CF is the most common, fatal hereditary disease in the United States.
Professor Colum Dunne, who is Foundation Chair and Director of Research at ULs Graduate Entry Medical School (GEMS), explained the background to the development of the product.
Patients with respiratory diseases use various devices, which help the removal of mucus from the airways and the improvement of pulmonary or lung function. One example that we have focused on here is the CF patient airway, which is defective in ciliary function; resulting, due to ineffective removal, in a mucus-rich environment favouring growth of bacteria. These bacteria include potential pathogens, associated with chronic infection, decreased lung function and accelerated respiratory disease.
Currently, there are percussion-based chest physiotherapy devices on the market, but according to Professor Dunne, these can sometimes become reservoirs for the bacteria that cause infections in Cystic Fibrosis patients. Because the new device, SoloPep, is disposable, it poses no threat of reinfection.
By The Washington Post Editorial Board
As it was outlined last week in a federal lawsuit, the scam had an elegant simplicity. Sharpies at a financial firm in Chevy Chase called Access Funding would comb court records with the goal of targeting unsophisticated Baltimoreans, usually African-Americans who as children had been victims of lead-paint poisoning. Often, they suffered cognitive impairment; frequently, they were hard up for cash; nearly always, they were unsuspecting.
The idea, according to the suit filed by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, was to bilk victims out of long-term, incremental payments, known as structured settlements, which they had received from lawsuits arising from the poisoning. In return, they were offered immediate, and deeply discounted, lump-sum payments, generally worth just 25 to 30 percent of the present value of the future payments they were forfeiting.
In some or most cases, an independent professional adviser might have cautioned the lead-paint victims that the deal might not be in their best interests; many of the victims, with no experience in financial management, would be ill served by a lump-sum payment, which they might squander. But in this case the adviser, required by law, was a sham arranged and mostly paid for by the financial firm itself, the lawsuit alleges.
The lawyer, Charles Smith, was neither independent nor very professional, and, in the scenario laid out by the lawsuit, what he rendered could hardly have been called advice. After a cursory few minutes on the phone with Smith, the lead-paint victims – now victimized again – generally went along with the deal.
Thats the gist of the bureaus suit against Access Funding, its officials and Smith. They stand accused of running what amounted to a highly effective con that exploited its victims by plying them with cash advances, which tricked them into believing, falsely, that they were obligated to go forward with the transaction.
Smith got $200 from Access for every client to whom he provided such independent professional advice, attesting that he had rendered it in a letter that was later provided for the benefit of a state court. Nearly all of the victims ended up poorer, generally to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars.
A similar lawsuit is pending in state court, brought by Marylands attorney general. The lawsuits, along with reforms enacted by state lawmakers this year, are a fitting response to the scheme, first uncovered last year by The Post.
In just two years ending last fall, according to the Maryland attorney generals office, Access Funding struck 158 such deals, mainly with lead-paint poisoning victims, in which it paid just $7.5 million for settlements with a present value of $32.6 million. Thats a disgrace in which state courts and judges, which rubber-stamped the deals, were complicit.
At the least, its to be hoped that the lawsuits result in orders that the defendants pay damages to their victims, be stripped of their ill-gotten gains and be permanently barred from the structured-settlement-purchasing industry. That outcome would serve as a warning to others who would prey on highly vulnerable, cognitively impaired victims – precisely the sort of citizens who are entitled to protection in law and the courts, but in this case didnt receive it.
(c) 2016, The Washington Post