Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


Ex-Wells Fargo CEO banned from banking industry, fined $17.5 million

Plus: Omar kicks off bid for second term; Edina’s Galleria shopping center for sale; first pediatric death of flu season reported in Minnesota; and more.

John Stumpf
John Stumpf
REUTERS/Gary Cameron

For CNBC, Thomas Franck reports, “The U.S. government announced Thursday that former Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf has been banned from ever working at a bank again and will pay $17.5 million for scandals in which millions of fake accounts were set up to meet sales quotas. The notice from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency said the regulator plans to target other individuals, including former executives, for their role in the scandals.”

The Star Tribune’s Mila Koumpilova writes: “Members of Minnesota’s congressional delegation and free-speech advocates voiced support Thursday for a University of Minnesota student sentenced to prison in China for tweets he made while studying in the United States. …Thursday evening, the Star Tribune received a note from Luo Daiqing’s university e-mail address saying he had indeed been sentenced to six months in prison for tweets seen as attacking the Chinese government but that he has since been released and staying in his hometown of Wuhan, which, coincidentally, is the subject of a travel ban due to the presence of coronavirus.”

MPR’s Matt Sepic and Brian Bakst write: “Democratic U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar began her pursuit of a second term Thursday, midway through a groundbreaking yet turbulent first term and with a long slate of opponents. … Omar’s bid to remain there presents a different kind of test. She faces some uneasiness in the district’s heavily Democratic voting base and near-constant criticism over her record and personal life from the right.”

For Twin Cities Business, Burl Gilyard reports, “Global real estate player Hines has put the upscale Galleria shopping center in Edina up for sale. Houston-based Hines acquired the property in 2012 for $127 million from Gabbert & Beck, who developed the Galleria, which was built in 1974. Hines completed an expansion of the mall in 2017. … The marketing materials indicate that ownership has been in contact with the city and outlines an ambitious list of possible additions to the site: two multifamily towers with 370 units, a luxury hotel with 154 rooms and a new 62,000-square-foot office building.”

The AP says, “A move by the Trump administration to allow 3D-printed gun files to be released on the internet would make it easier for terrorists and criminals to access weapons, Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson said Thursday in filing a multi-state lawsuit trying to block the data. The lawsuit, joined by Minnesota, California, New York and 16 other states, was filed in U.S. District Court in Seattle. Ferguson said a previous multistate lawsuit led a federal judge last year to strike down the administration’s earlier attempt to allow the files to be distributed.”

For the Star Tribune, Andy Mannix writes: “A federal judge sentenced University of Minnesota financial law professor Ed Adams to two years of probation and $5,000 in fines Thursday for lying to the Internal Revenue Service. Judge Donovan Frank said Adams deserved a harsher sentence than the one year of probation that prosecutors requested because of his role as a tenured professor who should be setting an example for up-and-coming lawyers.”

Article continues after advertisement

MPR’s Mark Zdechlik reports: “Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg opened a presidential campaign office Thursday in Minneapolis — the first of eight he plans in Minnesota. ‘We can’t take states like Minnesota for granted,’ Bloomberg said, noting that Donald Trump nearly defeated Hillary Clinton in the state in 2016. ‘That’s why we’re not waiting to organize and invest in Minnesota.’”

For KARE-TV Estefan Saucedo reports, “The first pediatric death of this flu season has been reported by the Minnesota Department of Health. The flu is considered widespread with 1,200 hospitalizations so far this season – 187 of them being within the last week. Of the 1,200 hospitalizations, 31 deaths have been reported. The metro has seen a total of 810 hospitalizations this season with the median age of those hospitalized being 52.”

For the Star Tribune, Chris Hewitt and Rohan Preston say, “Three months after it cut shows to balance funding shortfalls, St. Paul’s Park Square Theatre has cut the position of artistic director. Flordelino Lagundino’s job was eliminated at a board meeting Jan. 13. He started Aug. 1, 2018, moving here from New York. Last fall, Lagundino explained the decision to close this winter and spring, eliminating musicals ‘Evita’ and ‘Miss You Like Hell,’ as a response to both funding shortfalls from major donors and disappointing ticket sales for two shows he programmed — ‘Aubergine’ and ‘Rocky Horror Show.’ Together, that added up to about $425,000. But, as theater officials figure out a future for the St. Paul institution, that wasn’t enough.”