Kevin Lewis, a former Little Rock attorney, pleaded guilty today to $47,000,000 bank fraud scheme. Lewis was a licensed attorney in Arkansas until 2010. According to the release from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Arkansas:
Lewis admitted that between December 31, 2008, and September 29, 2010, First Southern Bank, a federally insured financial institution located in Batesville, Arkansas purchased special improvement district bonds, totaling approximately $23 million from Kevin Lewis. Prior to the purchase of each bond, Lewis would provide the bank with offering documents describing the details of bonds. At the plea hearing, Lewis acknowledged that these bonds were fraudulent.
In addition to the fraudulent bonds provided to First Southern Bank, a bank that was forced into FDIC receivership upon learning of the status of the bonds, the following financial institutions provided loans to Kevin Lewis which were collateralized, in whole or in part, by fraudulent bonds: Centennial Bank, Citizens State Bank, Liberty Bank, First Community, Allied, Simmons, and Regions Bank. The following banks currently hold fraudulent bonds which were originally sold by Kevin Lewis: Centennial Bank and Bank of Augusta. The intended loss amount in this case is approximately $47,000,000.
The penalty for bank fraud is up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. Lewis's sentencing date will be set by the court at a later date.