Arkansas Business has been
ahead of the rest of state media in coverage of a loan fraud investigation involving Dennis Smiley
, former CEO of Arvest operations in Benton County. Today it has a report related to a document purportedly signed by another Arvest official that allowed Smiley to use Arvest stock as collateral on a loan at another bank. Arvest disclaims knowledge.
AB, at the link above and in related stories, has all the details. Smiley faces lawsuits from nearly a dozen banks for defaulting on loan agreements that could total $4.5 million. Big money and a big bank makes for an important business story.