As a business ethics and white collar crime speaker, (www.chuckgallagher.com) I often tell groups – Every choice has a consequence. The strange part about choices and consequences is – if you don’t see an immediate consequence, often you find yourself caught in the illusion that there isn’t one. When I speak about the Truth about Consequences – I share that one can never escape the consequences that follow ones choices. I know. I speak from experience.
Today, as announced by the US Attorney’s office in the Southern District of Texas, Melvin Van Holloway, age 40, had to step forward and begin the process of accepting the consequences of his actions by pleading guilty to bank fraud in connection with loans he made at Capital One Bank.
According to the news release: Holloway made material false statements in connection with his applications to obtain over $100,000 in automobile loans from Capital One N.A. and its subsidiary, Capital One Auto Finance. He was confronted at the bank by United States Secret Service in the process of trying to secure an additional $25,000 personal loan. In making the loan applications, Holloway used the social security number of another person without authorization.
Sentencing is scheduled for June 2, 2008. HOLLOWAY faces a possible sentence of up to 30 years imprisonment and a possible fine of up to $1,000,000.
Considering the pool of “free money” has seemingly dried up and lender are taking a more careful look at loan applications, it makes no sense to make false statements in connection with any loan application. Remember, every choice has a consequence. Making false statements is a crime, so is obtaining money under false pretense. In Van Holloway’s case, it appears that he also participated in what most would call identity theft by using the social security number of another person.
While I doubt that Van Holloway will get the maximum sentence, there is no doubt that, in the prime of his life, Van Holloway will spend time in federal prison. Having been there myself, I can state categorically it is not “club fed.” Federal prison is something to be avoided. It is not fun and Van Holloway will find that his life will be altered in dramatic ways.
One this is certain, Van Holloway will learn the lesson that I learned the hard way – crime doesn’t pay.