Bekkedam's and Hartline's convictions upheld in Nova Bank case

Barry Bekkedam leaves federal court in Philadelphia on March 29, 2016.

A federal judge upheld the April convictions of Barry Bekkedam and Brian Hartline for their roles in an attempt in 2009 to obtain $13 million in bailout money for now-defunct Nova Bank, according to an order published Monday.

Hartline and Bekkedam, a Villanova basketball player in the 1980s, were found guilty of guilty of conspiracy to defraud the federal government, fraud against the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, and two counts of false statements to the federal government. 

U.S. District Court Judge C. Darnell Jones II denied motions for acquittal and motions for a new trial by both men in an order dated Friday.

Prosecutors had charged in a 2014 indictment that Bekkedam, the bank's founding chairman, and Hartline, its chief executive, orchestrated a series of fraudulent loans to customers who would then immediately invest the money back into Nova to help the bank qualify for a $13 million bailout.

Hartline's attorney, Patrick J Egan, of Fox Rothschild LLP, said in an interview that he will appeal to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. "I'm extremely disappointed. I believe that the court is incorrect," Egan said.

It is not clear from the court docket when Hartline's sentencing will occur.

Bekkedam's attorney, Michael J. Engle, of Greenblatt, Pierce, Engle, Funt & Flores LLC, also said there would be an appeal. 

"We are steadfast in our belief, and our insistence, that the facts of this case be considered in their entirety on appeal, and that Barry Bekkedam who, along with his family, has suffered years of stress, heartache and unconscionable reputational damage, will see his conviction overturned," Engle said in an email.

 

Bekkedam's sentencing is schedueled for Nov. 14.

The two men face prison sentences of up to 25 years and fines of up to $1.75 million, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.