Over the past several days, Karen Janoski, CEO of the $58 million Greater Pittsburgh Police Federal Credit Union , has been flooded with phone calls from anxious members after it was linked to a federal investigation of the big city’s police chief.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Feb. 15 that the FBI had subpoenaed the 6,031-member credit union for documents in an FBI-IRS investigation of Police Chief Nate Harper, who has since resigned.
The newspaper, citing a source familiar with the investigation, also reported federal investigators serving subpoenas have taken “boxes of documents” from police offices in relation to a probe of the police department’s special events and personnel and finance offices.
The Pittsburgh newspaper said federal investigators are “looking into allegations that funds had been misappropriated internally and are trying to follow the money trail.”
“What I can tell you is that we were served with a subpoena,” Janoski told Credit Union Times on Friday. “Nothing was seized from the credit union. They didn’t take boxes of stuff out of the credit union as the media has been reporting. We received a subpoena. We complied with the subpoena and we are not involved (in the investigation) other than producing the documents that were required from the subpoena.”
Janoski said many members have been calling the credit union after seeing video footage on the news of FBI and IRS agents removing boxes of documents. Photos of the credit union’s sign also have appeared on local television and newspapers.
However, those boxes of documents were removed from police offices, not the credit union, Janoski said. She said the credit union made copies of documents and gave them to federal investigators, but she could not say how many documents were given to investigators.
“You see pictures in the paper when they raided the police station,” she said. “But they didn’t walk out of the credit union with (boxes of documents).”
Janoski complained that the media reports are making the credit union look guilty when in fact it is not the focus of the investigation and did nothing wrong.
“We are trying to convey to our members that their money here is safe,” she said. “They don’t have to move their accounts. They don’t have to change the way they do business, and we are not part of this investigation. We didn’t do anything wrong.”
Janoski posted a statement on the credit union’s website and had a letter to the editor printed in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that appeared on the newspaper’s website Thursday. She said the credit union is now receiving a lot of positive feedback from members, and that she also has discussed the incident with an NCUA examiner.