No additional jail time for La Jolla Bank bribery
by NEAL PUTNAM
Published - 07/25/16 - 12:43 PM | 4199 views | 0 0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A businessman who paid a $15,000 bribe to a La Jolla Bank manager, who demanded the fee so he could get a $1.8 million loan, has been ordered to pay $922,582 in restitution.

The restitution ordered for Annand Sliuman, 35, is for the original loan that he received and defaulted on following the failure of La Jolla Bank in 2010.

No additional jail time was ordered as Sliuman was given credit for several days in jail by U.S. District Court Judge Anthony Battaglia on terms of three year’s probation on July 18.

“Mr. Sliuman, you’re getting a big break, courtesy of the government,” said Battaglia as he mentioned the sentence included no jail time.

Sliuman pleaded guilty to bank bribery in 2014.

Battaglia set the monthly payment amount at $500 per month for Sliuman, whose attorney says he works 12-16 hours per day as a restaurant consultant.

Sliuman once operated a sushi restaurant in El Cajon and a Lakeside grocery store, but lost his businesses and Spring Valley home when he couldn’t pay the loan back. There was also fallout after federal charges were issued of others connected with the failure of La Jolla Bank in 2010.

La Jolla Bank was taken over by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. after the bank ran up debt totaling $1 billion in 2010.

His attorney filed paperwork that said Sliuman only received $393,234 in the $1.8 loan because most of the loan went for various equipment lease payoffs, payoffs to two other loans, and a $15,000 payment to Amalia Martinez, 52, a bank manager at La Jolla Bank.

Martinez pleaded guilty to misapplication of bank funds, and she will be sentenced Aug. 22. Martinez faces up to five years in federal prison and remains free on $25,000 bond.

According to Sliuman’s attorney, Sliuman paid Martinez $10,000 as a loan to her in 2007, but he eventually learned she would never repay him back. Sliuman later paid her $15,000 in order to get another loan.

One of Sliuman’s former employees, Laura Ortuondo, 36, of Cupertino, pleaded guilty to making false statements to federal agents in which she aided Sliuman by submitting two tax forms that were not correct. Ortuondo was fined $3,000 and placed on three year’s probation.

Jocelyn J. Brown, 60, a former loan broker, pleaded guilty to making a false statement about the bank bribe, and will be sentenced Aug. 15. Brown remains free on $20,000 bond.

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