V.I. residents who have been unable to withdraw their deposits from St.Thomas-based Her Majesty's Credit Union should contact the V.I. Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs to file a formal complaint, the DLCA announced Tuesday.
Those in this situation can come to the department and meet with a Consumer Protection Services (CPS) agent, who will assist them in completing the required paperwork. Once the complaint has been documented, the CPS division at DLCA will continue its review and investigation of HMCU, according to a statement from DLCA.
HMCU is facing a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission fraud investigation and has closed its doors. Investors are saying they cannot get the company to pay on certificates of deposit (See related link below).
Despite calling itself a credit union, the SEC says HMCU has never been chartered as a credit union by any state or the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), the federal regulator of federally chartered credit unions. In addition, HMCU is not insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, a U.S. government-backed fund used to protect deposits of credit union members.
It was, however, licensed by the V.I. DLCA as a credit union.
In 2010, one of the company's owners; Stanley Roberson, (also known as Stanley McDuffie and Stanley Battle, according to the SEC) was sentenced to two six-month terms in prison in Colorado for refusing to comply with state subpoenas for information on HMCU.
As a result of Roberson/McDuffie/Battle's conviction for contempt of court, the NCUA issued an order in April of 2011 prohibiting him from participating in the affairs of any federally insured financial institution.
However, NCUA does not have the authority to regulate or examine HMCU because HMCU is not advertising itself as a federally insured credit union, and HMCU makes no references to NCUA on its website, according to Voorhees and the SEC.
While HMCU has said its investor funds are insured up to $100,000 by Lloyd's of London, "on two occasions, Lloyd's of London, or its affiliates wrote to HMCU to demand that HMCU cease its unauthorized use of Lloyd's name and the false and misleading statements regarding insurance issued by Lloyd's of London," Voorhees said.
The V.I. Department of Justice has commenced an investigation of Her Majesty’s Credit Union, its affiliate companies, and its principals. DLCA will continue to cooperate with the Department of Justice in the investigation of this matter, according to its statement.
Questions regarding the complaint process can be directed to the Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs, Division of Consumer Services at 340-774-3130. DLCA’s St. Thomas office is located in Subbase on the second floor of the Property & Procurement Building.