Fraud Inquiry Continues : New President Named at North America S

Times Staff Writer

Federal regulators have hired a new president for troubled North America Savings & Loan Assn. in Santa Ana, an S&L; formed in January from the remains of the insolvent, state-chartered savings and loan of the same name.

Janice K. Ramocinski will take over the reins of the troubled S&L; under contract with the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, which controls North America under the agency's consignment program.

Ramocinski, 35, a resident of Orange, will replace Charles Bottomley, 55, who is retiring. She becomes one of a handful of women to head an S&L; in California.

North America Savings was first seized by state S&L; regulators on Jan. 16, several hours after its owner, Duayne D. Christensen of Newport Beach, died in a car crash. When state examiners found evidence of widespread fraud at the S&L;, they turned the operation over to the bank board and its liquidating arm, the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp., on Jan. 23.

Ramocinski, an S&L; industry consultant, said regulators are still trying to find out what Christensen did with more than $40 million in S&L; funds. She said no one knows yet if the S&L; can recover from the fraud.

The FBI is investigating bank fraud and embezzlement allegations against several Christensen associates, including his business manager and confidante, Janet F. McKinzie, who inherited Christensen's property.

Bank board lawyers and investigators are also trying to tie up McKinzie's assets and any assets that can be found in Christensen's estate.

Ramocinski, a former member of the Touche, Ross & Co. accounting firm, has been spending much of her time as a consulting chief financial officer at Westwood Savings & Loan Assn. in Los Angeles.

Bottomley is a former assistant managing officer with Mercury Savings & Loan Assn. in Huntington Beach.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World