News Column

Former Credit Union Director Charged With Embezzlement

Feb. 25, 2013

John P. Martin

Prosecutors say a former director of a North Philadelphia credit union stole more than $500,000 from the institution, a theft that contributed to its collapse.

Miqueas Santana, 43, faces charges of money laundering and embezzlement from the Borinquen Federal Credit Union. The charges were filed Thursday and announced Friday by U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger.

Borinquen, a Hunting Park thrift that for decades served low-income Hispanics in North Philadelphia, collapsed two years ago after investigators uncovered widespread fraud.

Manager Ignacio Morales later admitted to laundering fraudulent IRS refund checks, stealing from the coffers and trying to arrange cocaine deals. He was sentenced last month to more than seven years in prison.

Morales also confessed to letting a member of the credit union's board of directors overdraw on his accounts. Neither he nor prosecutors identified the director until Santana was charged this week.

According to charging documents, Santana allegedly siphoned more than $528,000 out of Borinquen accounts between 2009 and 2011 for real estate purchases and expenses related to a check-cashing business he owned.

Santana was charged without an indictment, a step that typically suggests a plea bargain.

He could not be reached for comment.

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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Source: (c) 2013 The Philadelphia Inquirer

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