LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A fourth federal class action lawsuit filed against a Henderson city councilman alleges predatory lending practices abetted by sham affiliation with a Native American tribe in California, the 8 News Now Investigators have learned.
Rehfedlt v. Green Arrow Solutions and a host of other defendants – filed in the Southern District of Indiana – seeks multiple damages under both Indiana’s consumer protection law and the RICO act. The RICO act punishes criminal enterprises, most notably organized crime. The councilman, Dan Shaw of Henderson’s Ward II, and the other defendants have not yet filed a response to the lawsuit. An email to Shaw’s official city email account went unanswered.
Court documents show the plaintiff, Sarah Rehfedlt, took a loan for $300 at an 823% annual percentage rate, which would result in a repayment of $5,356.07 if paid on schedule. Indiana law establishes a maximum loan finance charge of 36% per year for consumer loans of this size.
The other three federal class action lawsuits – filed in Massachusetts, Illinois and Indiana – were settled out of court or otherwise disposed of. All four lawsuits say Shaw and his partner’s business – Green Arrow Solutions – intentionally skirt state-regulated interest rates by claiming association with the Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians of the Big Valley Rancheria, but are not in fact associated with the tribe. This practice is known as a scheme called “Rent-a-tribe,” the complaint says. The tribe is not a named defendant but is mentioned in many of this lawsuit’s allegations.
One such allegation is that the defendants do not loan money in 16 states in which it is likely “they will face public or private enforcement action.”
The City of Henderson, in response to a request for comment on this lawsuit, sent a statement through a spokeswoman. The statement, excluding pleasantries, reads: “The City of Henderson does not comment on Councilmember’s private or personal business matters.”
Another company named in the lawsuit, Impact Payment Systems, LLC, is run by Shaw and a partner. The lawsuit claims Impact Payment Systems was sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission in 2011. The SEC alleged that it was a Ponzi scheme which raised $47 million to lend. Shaw and his partner eventually dissolved Impact Payment Systems and created Green Arrow Solutions “to continue a high-interest Internet loan business,” the lawsuit says.
Lawyers for the plaintiff did not respond to emails seeking comment.
Shaw was appointed to an open seat on the council in 2015 and was re-elected in Ward II in 2019.