James White, 2021. Breaking: Evidence Shows Largest Montana Credit Union Stole $500 Million in Assets - Montana Daily Gazette. montanadailygazette.com/2021/07/07/breaking-evidence-proves-largest-credit-union-in-montana-asset-stripped-member-properties-for-up-to-500-million/
After an almost two-year investigation started by NorthWest Liberty News and now, Montana Daily Gazette (MDG), the proof seems incontrovertible. In the following article, MDG will expose the systematic, organized, and criminal theft between $100 million and $500 Million in properties and assets from borrowers and members of the Whitefish Credit Union (WFCU).
An important point needs to be highlighted before we begin exposing the colossal bank fraud perpetrated by WFCU. Every single person who looked at the evidence we gathered – ranging from local to state law enforcement who were currently members of WFCU – proving property theft by the organization removed their funds and closed their accounts with WFCU, with no exceptions. To reiterate, every single person closed their accounts upon hearing our information, without exception.
Furthermore, every investigative agency that has reviewed the documentation contained within this article has concluded that WFCU is guilty of committing financial crimes against Thorco Incorporated and its owners, Dennis and Donna Thornton, including the Flathead County Attorney and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).
Before we expose the criminality of the modern-day WFCU, let’s take a look back to better times when they were first established and why one former member stated that “Whitefish Credit Union used to have the best reputation for honesty in Montana,” which is a claim that should never again be spoken after the evidence is revealed herein.
From the WFCU website…
Whitefish Credit Union was established on Aug. 29, 1934, by a group of railroad workers who pooled together $5 apiece. Exactly 74 years later, on Aug. 29, the credit union surpassed the $1 billion mark in asset value. Today, it has six branches located in Thompson Falls, Eureka, Polson, Columbia Falls, Whitefish, and Kalispell. In Kalispell, there is a main branch and a commercial branch.
According to the many former members who were interviewed for this article, the “most trusted” status of WFCU began to become tarnished right around 2009 or 2010. Coincidentally, that is right about the same time that long-serving President and CEO Charlie Abell stepped down and was replaced by James Kenyon III.
According to former WFCU members, Kenyon, who served 14 years as Senior VP of Missoula Federal Credit Union before joining WFCU, is the person most responsible for changing the culture of WFCU from one of the most trusted banking institutions in Montana to the apparent asset-stripping criminal operation outlined in the article below. Those words might seem harsh, but they were shared, at least in part, by former Regional Director of the National Credit Union Association (NCUA), Mr. Allen Carver.
Carver, who retired after a 34-year career with the NCUA, was hired by the victim, Dennis Thornton, to investigate the theft of his property by WFCU. Carver, now a private consultant, clearly outlines the wrongdoing of WFCU against Thornton in his report, which was sealed under a judge’s protection order and has not been disseminated publicly until now.
Montana Daily Gazette, shielded by the strongest Journalism Shield Law in the United States (thank you Rep. Daniel Zolnikov), has helped affirm our spirit of fearless reporting, even when publishing that which was ordered sealed by a Montana judge. But we do not work for the judge; we work for our readers and our fine patrons in the state of Montana.