Alert 2013-15| August 16, 2013

Unauthorized Banking: Freedom 1st National Bank

To

Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks and Federal Savings Associations; All State Banking Authorities; Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; Conference of State Bank Supervisors; Deputy Comptrollers (Districts); Assistant Deputy Comptrollers; District Counsels; All Examining Personnel; and Other Interested Parties

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has been informed that an entity entitled Freedom Gold Club is claiming to be associated with a national bank named Freedom 1st National Bank. Freedom 1st National Bank is not authorized by the OCC pursuant to federal law to conduct business as a national bank. It is a violation of federal criminal law, 18 USC 709, for any corporation or person acting on behalf of a corporation to operate as a national bank without authorization. All national banks are chartered and regulated by the OCC, a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

Freedom 1st National Bank is a fictitious entity used as part of a scheme that involves soliciting consumers for semi-secured credit cards through the U.S. mail. Potential victims receive solicitations and program agreements, which may mention that Credit One Bank, N.A., is connected with the card agreement. Credit One Bank, N.A., has no connection to this entity. Victims then submit check payments in amounts ranging from $500 to $900 as deposits to obtain a semi-secured credit card with the understanding that he or she is entering into a program to rebuild poor credit. The checks are cashed by an individual using the name of Bradford C. Ege II, and the victims never receive the anticipated credit card.

This fraudulent entity is purportedly located 601 NE 11th Street, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. The individual who claims to be the owner and appears to be cashing the victims' checks is named Bradford C. Ege II.

Additional information concerning this matter that should be brought to the attention of the OCC may be forwarded to

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Special Supervision Division
400 7th St. SW, Suite 3E-218; MS 8E-12
Washington, DC 20219
Phone: (202) 649-6450
Fax: (571) 293-4925
www.occ.gov
occalertresponses@occ.treas.gov

Ellen M. Warwick
Director for Enforcement and Compliance