Share This Page

Latrobe bank loses $182K in check scheme

| Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012, 12:01 a.m.

Commercial National Financial Corp.'s earnings in the third quarter were hurt by one-time items, including a counterfeit foreign check scheme by “local parties” that cost the Latrobe bank $182,000.

The parent of Commercial Bank & Trust of Pennsylvania said in its earning statement on Monday that “a series of counterfeit non-U.S./foreign check deposits was recorded” in the July-September quarter. The bank paid an additional $5,000 in legal fees related to the fraud.

“Full recovery on this wire fraud recognition and all associated legal costs is being aggressively pursued by corporate legal counsel against the local parties responsible for this incident,” CEO Gregg Hunter said in the statement.

Hunter and Thomas Watters, the bank's chief financial officer, could not be reached for comment.

Commercial National, which has 10 branches in Westmoreland County, earned $1.07 million, or 38 cents a share, in the July-September quarter, down from $1.88 million, or 65 cents a share, in the same quarter the year before.

Also among one-time charges was $35,000 the bank paid to settle a lawsuit over the compliance of its automated teller machines with federal disability-access requirements.

In August, Commercial National was ranked No. 1 for profitability and soundness for banks in Pennsylvania with less than $1 billion in assets, according to Bank Director magazine.

In June, the bank's board of directors voted to delist the bank's stock from the Nasdaq exchange and pull the shares registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The stock trades on the OTCQB Marketplace under the symbol CNAF. The change was expected to save the bank about $250,000 a year in accounting, legal and administrative costs.

Alex Nixon is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7928 or anixon@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.