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U.S. Bancorp aiding payday loan probe of Scott Tucker

Leawood race car driver and payday loan mogul Scott Tucker awaits federal trial in New York, accused of deceiving borrowers about the cost of loans. If convicted, he faces as long as 20 years in prison.
Leawood race car driver and payday loan mogul Scott Tucker awaits federal trial in New York, accused of deceiving borrowers about the cost of loans. If convicted, he faces as long as 20 years in prison. File photo

U.S. Bancorp said it’s cooperating with federal prosecutors in an investigation of Scott Tucker, the Leawood payday loan mogul who was indicted in February and accused of running his business as a racketeering enterprise that exploited poor people.

Tucker and his businesses “maintained certain deposit accounts” with a U.S. Bancorp unit, the company said in a filing without elaborating.

Tucker has denied any wrongdoing.

He’s among at least five payday lenders to face charges since 2014 as federal prosecutors target those who’ve used loopholes to operate in states that outlawed the costly loans. With state regulators unable to stop the operations, federal prosecutors turned to a racketeering law that was created to prosecute the Mafia. It gives them more time to go after wrongdoers and sets stiffer penalties.

Tucker, better-known as a race car driver on U.S. and European circuits, awaits federal trial in New York along with two others, accused of deceiving borrowers about the cost of loans. If convicted, he faces as long as 20 years in prison.

Dana Ripley, a spokesman for U.S. Bancorp, decline to comment on the filing.

Tucker’s operation generated more than $2 billion in revenue, and Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara sued to win forfeiture of property in Aspen, Colo.; a Learjet; six Ferraris; and four Porsches, saying they were bought with proceeds of crime.

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