Banker will get will get 1 12 months in jail in Manafort mortgage scheme

FILE — Chicago banker Stephen Calk, left, leaves federal court docket in New York, June 24, 2021. On Monday, Feb. 7, 2022, he was sentenced to a 12 months in jail for his conviction in a scheme to make $16 million in loans to Paul Manafort to achieve affect within the Trump administration. (AP Photograph/Richard Drew, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — A Chicago banker was sentenced on Monday to a 12 months in jail for his conviction in a scheme to make $16 million in loans to Paul Manafort to achieve affect within the Trump administration.

Manafort served as a marketing campaign supervisor to former President Donald Trump for a key stretch from June to early August 2016.

The banker, Stephen Calk, was convicted final 12 months on monetary establishment bribery and conspiracy prices in Manhattan federal court docket.

Earlier than listening to the sentence, the 57-year-old Calk advised the decide that the case has left his life “in shambles.”

“I sit right here deeply, deeply humbled,” he mentioned, preventing again tears. He added: “I by no means sought to achieve fame or energy.”

Protection lawyer Paul Schoeman had argued for a non-prison sentence for Calk, calling him “a superb and respectable man who led a law-abiding life. … It’s an aberration that he’s on this courtroom.”

The lawyer mentioned the truth that the financial institution suffered no critical monetary hurt “makes this case distinctive,” he added.

However prosecutors argued Calk deserved a time period of as much as 5 years. They mentioned he “corruptly abused” his place as chairman and chief government of The Federal Financial savings Financial institution to make $16 million in unsound loans to Manafort in trade for Manafort’s assist in securing political energy.

“There’s nothing distinctive in regards to the corrupting affect of energy,” prosecutor Paul Monteleoni mentioned.

Choose Lorna G. Schofield advised Calk she wanted put him behind bars to ship the message that “nobody is above the regulation, no matter their wealth and affect.”

She added: “You’re extraordinarily rich and also you didn’t must commit this crime.”

The decide added at some point to the one-year time period — a modification that would qualify him for break day his sentence for good habits.

Throughout a three-week trial, prosecutors mentioned Calk performed a pivotal function in getting approval for a $9.5 million actual property building mortgage and one other $6.5 million mortgage so Manafort may end building on a Brooklyn condominium and keep away from foreclosures.

Protection legal professionals argued that Calk couldn’t have gained approval for the loans with out the financial institution’s mortgage committee and underwriters agreeing to the phrases. And so they famous that the loans have been obtained at a time when Manafort was thought of rich and profitable and had not but been criminally charged.

Prosecutors supplied proof displaying Manafort helped Calk — a navy veteran — get an interview for a job within the Trump administration, though he was by no means employed. Calk had hoped to grow to be Secretary of the Military, however finally interviewed for different positions as a result of that put up had already been crammed, Antony Scaramucci testified on the trial.

Early within the trial, Scaramucci, who had labored on Trump’s presidential transition group, testified that he by no means would have enabled Calk to get the interview for the administration put up if he had identified that Calk was serving to Manafort to get tens of millions of {dollars} in loans for his actual property ventures.

Manafort misplaced his place in Trump’s marketing campaign over his ties to Ukraine. Particular counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation led to his prison conviction and a sentence of over seven years in jail for monetary crimes associated to his political consulting work in Ukraine. In December 2020, Trump pardoned him.

Calk resigned from his family-owned financial institution in 2019.

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