Wells Fargo fined $24 million over servicemember loans

September 29, 2016 2:17 PM EDT

The sign outside the Wells Fargo & Co. bank in downtown Denver April 13, 2016. REUTERS/Rick Wilking


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(Reuters) - Wells Fargo & Co was fined about $24 million on Thursday by federal regulators for alleged violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, piling more pressure on the bank already embroiled in a sales abuse scandal.

Wells Fargo Bank, doing business as Wells Fargo Dealer Services, agreed to pay more than $4.1 million after the Justice Department alleged it repossessed 413 cars owned by servicemembers without obtaining a court order.

The unit of Wells Fargo also agreed to change its policies, the department said.

Separately, the bank was fined $20 million for violating the same act by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

The bank violated three separate provisions of the act between about 2006 and 2016, the regulator, which did a separate investigation, said.

Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf on Thursday faced U.S. lawmakers' calls to resign during his second trip to Capitol Hill for his handling of the sales abuses, where staff opened as many as 2 million accounts in customers' names without their authorization.

The San Francisco-based bank has agreed to pay $190 million earlier this month to settle regulatory charges over the scandal and has fired about 5,300 employees.

Wells Fargo shares closed down 2.07 percent at $44.37 on Thursday. They have lost nearly 11 percent, or about $27 billion in market value, since Sept. 7, the last trading day before the scandal broke.

(Reporting by Eric Beech in Washington and Narottam Medhora in Bengaluru; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and Sriraj Kalluvila)



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