Weather Forecast


FBI investigating fraud involving Little Falls credit union

A Little Falls credit union was liquidated and an FBI fraud investigation is ongoing.

Kyle Loven, FBI spokesman in Minneapolis, said the bureau became involved in late January when irregularities were reported at the credit union. Loven couldn’t elaborate whether the report came from the credit union itself or a third party. The FBI is working with the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) and the Little Falls Police Department in the investigation.

Loven said there aren’t many details he can provide because the investigation is active. The FBI, Loven said, is trying to determine what actually occurred at the credit union. It’s not uncommon for the FBI to be involved in investigations of financial institutions.

No arrests have been made in the case, Loven said.

The credit union had 3,400 members. The NCUA reported the members had assets of about $51 million.

“Depositors should not fear because they are insured,” Loven said. “People shouldn’t panic about losing their money.”

Accounts are federally insured up to $250,000.

The Minnesota Department of Commerce reported it decided to liquidate St. Francis Campus Credit Union and discontinue operations after “conducting an examination and determining the credit union was insolvent with no prospect for restoring viable operations on its own.”

The commerce department closed the St. Francis Campus Credit Union on Feb. 14 and appointed the NCUA as its receiver. The NCUA acts as the liquidating agent. The Melrose-based Central Minnesota Credit Union “assumed the St. Francis Campus Credit Union’s members, assets, shares and loans,” the NCUA reported.

Through the change, St. Francis credit union members became members of Central Minnesota Credit Union without an interruption of service. Central Minnesota, with 52,000 members, has a credit union in Little Falls, as well as 15 other locations including Long Prairie and Wadena.

St. Francis credit union members with questions about their accounts may contact the Central Minnesota Credit Union member services office at 320-414-0500.

Loven said there isn’t a timeline for a completed investigation.

“Right now we are focused on the credit union,” Loven said. “We’ll look at the facts and conduct the investigation until we are satisfied we are finished.”

The Credit Union Times reported St. Francis Campus, as of its fourth quarter call report, had six full-time employees, two part-time employees and Margurite M. Cofell as manager/CEO. The Credit Union Times reported the St. Francis’ credit union’s “most recent financial reports showed no sign of financial distress” with a $482,016 net profit for 2013.

Chartered in 1963, St. Francis Campus Credit Union served employees of the St. Francis Campus, as owned by the Franciscan Sisters, their relatives and employees of the credit union, the NCUA reported. St. Francis Campus Credit Union is the second federally insured credit union liquidation in 2014. In January, the Bagumbayan Credit Union of Chicago which served 44 members with $55,000 in assets, was liquidated.

RENEE RICHARDSON may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at

Renee Richardson
Richardson is a Pacelli High School graduate from Austin, Minn., who earned an applied science degree from the University of Minnesota, Waseca, with an emphasis in horse management. She worked extensively in the resort industry. She received an associate’s degree from Central Lakes College, where she was editor of the Westbank Journal student newspaper, as well as a summer intern at the Dispatch. She graduated from St. Cloud State University summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications and interned at the St. Cloud Times covering business while attending SCSU. She's been with the Brainerd Dispatch since 1996.
(218) 855-5852