Heritage Bank of Commerce in San Jose, California, has agreed to pay $4 million to settle claims arising from an alleged Ponzi scheme.
According to a statement released Wednesday, the agreement is with Christine Lovato, trustee for four bankrupt firms linked to DC Solar, a failed manufacturer of mobile solar generators. Heritage Commerce’s payment settles Lovato’s claims arising from the bank’s handling of deposit accounts maintained by the bankrupt firms as well as several related investment funds.
Heritage Commerce has denied all liability.
DC Solar’s owners, Jeff and Paulette Carpoff, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and money laundering charges in January 2020.
DC Solar investors purchased mobile solar generators, purportedly manufactured by the company. Instead of operating the generators themselves, investors leased them back to DC Solar, which would in turn lease them to end users. In addition to benefiting from the lease revenue, investors…