A seventh former senior executive of Wells Fargo Bank has reached a settlement with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) for his role in the bank’s fake account scandal.
James Strother, the bank’s former general counsel, was ordered to pay $3.5 million by the OCC on Jan. 15 as part of a settlement that also included a personal cease and desist order.
In sworn testimony before the OCC, Strother, along with other executives, “admitted that the bank had a systemic sales practices misconduct problem rooted in the community bank’s business model,” the OCC said in its charging documents.
“The systemic sales practices misconduct persisted for years due to the failures of Bank senior executives and failures in the checks and balances that were supposed to be provided by the Law Department and Audit,” the OCC said. Specifically, none of the leaders in the bank’s law department and audit, of which Strother was a part, “adequately performed their responsibilities with respect to the sales practices misconduct problem.”
Strother agreed to cooperate with the OCC in any investigation, litigation, or administrative proceeding related to sales practices misconduct at the bank. His penalty follows OCC settlements with six other former senior Wells Fargo executives—a list that includes former CEO John Stumpf, who agreed to pay $17.5 million.