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Last Updated Friday, April 4, 2008 11:30 AM Texas Time

April 4, 2008

Avoiding Rising Mortgage Fraud
Mortgage brokers originated more than half of the loans where a report of mortgage fraud was filed, according to a new government report. A number of recommended steps lenders can take to avoid fraud appear to be working.
read story from MortgageDaily

Palm Beach Conspirators Face Mortgage Fraud Charges
Gregory Claude Brown faces federal charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and wire fraud for giving fraudulent information on mortgage loan applications for properties in Palm Beach, Fla. Co-defendants Monica Martinez and Wilfredo Martinez also face similar charges for the scheme that brought them loan funds worth $1.6 million from mortgage companies, and Brown and his cohorts could get up to 20 years in prison if they are convicted.
read story from The Palm Beach Post

Mortgage Fraud Hits Capital of Texas
Mortgage fraud has proven to be a problem recently for Austin, Texas, especially in the latest incident that involved 16 defendants including defendants including an attorney, a personal banker and a real estate agent.
read story from KVUE News

Mortgage Fraud Continues to Grow
The problem of fraud in the mortgage industry is on the rise, particularly in Florida, which is at the top of the fraud index, according to the Mortgage Asset Research Institute. Other states that see a high level of this crime are Nevada, Michigan, California and Georgia.
read story from The Baltimore Sun

Former Landlord Charged with Mortgage Fraud
John Wanek, a former landlord, has been indicted for mortgage fraud of more than $15 million on two properties in Columbus, Ohio. He has nine charges against him, including engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, forgery, theft and falsification.
read story from Business First of Columbus

Five Admit to Mortgage Fraud
Sharon Chamberlain, Ericka Stanford, Andrea Revak, Aaron McCarthy and Marlin Sprouts Jr. all pleaded guilty U.S. District Court to mortgage fraud charges in the Pittsburgh area.
read story from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

April 3, 2008

FBI Offers Tips to Prevent Mortgage Fraud
The FBI provides a comprehensive list of admonitions on ways to avoid getting caught in a mortgage fraud trap.

Who Is at Fault in Mortgage Fraud?
Zac Bissonnette says in a blog that lenders and professionals in the mortgage industry, not the actual home buyers, are to blame for crimes of mortgage fraud.
read blog entry from Blogging Stocks

City Files Mortgage Fraud Suit Against Firm
The city of Minneapolis and three surrounding cities filed suit against TJ Waconia, owners Thomas J. Balko and Jonathan E. Helgason and associated firms for mortgage fraud on 140 properties in the Minneapolis area.
read story from The Minneapolis Star Tribune

Five Charged in Mortgage Fraud Case
John Pereless, Kevin Deickmann, Ramon Iglesia, Susan Pereless (a.k.a. “Susan Coonan”) and Erza Lustado have all been charged with one count each of second-degree conspiracy to commit theft by deception and second degree theft by deception for their involvement in a mortgage fraud operation in New Jersey that cost lenders more than $4 million in bad loans.
read story from The Hub

Southern Bank Files Suit for Mortgage Fraud
Southern Bank accused Robert Demello, Raymond W., Virginia Turner, their company—MAC of CSRA Inc.—and William Brent Raulerson of a mortgage fraud scheme in Georgia in which the bank claims it was conned out of $388,615.
read story from The Augusta Chronicle

Subprime Mortgage Broker Charged with Fraud
Nicole Lyder pleaded innocent to a 21-count indictment in relation to mortgage fraud in Boston. Lyder has been investigated by the state of Massachusetts for four mortgage loans that authorities claim the former subprime lender secured from Fremont Investment and Loan.
read story from The Boston Globe

April 2, 2008

Mortgage Fraud Ringleader to Appear in Court
Charles C. Head is scheduled to make his first court appearance for accusations against him of mortgage fraud of $12.6 million on 115 different properties in various states from California to New York. Head is the alleged ringleader in the scam and could serve a minimum of 20 years in prison if he is convicted.
read story from The Sacramento Bee

Six Charged for Mortgage Fraud
Victoria Sprouse, Michael Pahutski, R. Michael Gee, Jules A. Springs, Gregory A. Mascaro and Gregory D. Rankin are all charged in a mortgage fraud case that involved at least $15 million in loans on 270 properties in Charlotte, N.C.
read story from The Charlotte Observer

Philly Woman Gets Prison Time for ID Theft Scam
Nancy Hellyer, who has a history of theft and fraud convictions, was sentenced to 18 months to 10 years in prison after she obtained more than $194,000 in an identity theft scheme on a hearing impaired couple in Philadelphia.
read story from Bucks County Courier-Times

April 1, 2008

Pennsylvania Cohorts Charged with Mortgage Fraud
Real estate investor David Paul and mortgage broker Diane Flannery were charged with mail fraud in a mortgage fraud scheme in Philadelphia that ultimately cost the government $200,000. Paul faces up to 40 years in prison, while Flannery could see up to 20.

Utah Man Pleads Guilty to Fraud of More Than $140 Million
Val Southwick entered a guilty plea for his involvement in one of the biggest fraud cases the state of Utah has ever seen. Southwick operated a scheme that netted him more than $140 million from at least 800 investors, and he now faces up to 15 years in prison.
read story from Daily Herald

FBI Increases Dedication to Fighting Mortgage Fraud
In an investigation into mortgage fraud in the lending industry, the FBI is targeting key corporate players—including senior executives—and criminal groups, though it has yet to name anyone specific. The FBI even released a new read story from Reuters

Ohio Mortgage Fraud Funding Could See Changes
Some residents of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, might be in more danger of losing their homes with the passing of a bill sponsored by Rep. Matt Huffman that would remove the funds for prevention and rescue of mortgage fraud and, instead, direct the money toward prosecuting mortgage fraud, razing houses and improving vacant lots.
read story from The Cleveland Plain Dealer

March 31, 2008

LTC Makes Proposal for Mortgage Fraud Protection
Lender Technologies Corporation, a subsidiary of the Mortgage Bankers Association, released a Request for Proposal for the establishment of a database for the country to combat mortgage fraud.

Man Gets 10 Years for Mortgage Fraud
Randall Aaron Davidson was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his operation of a mortgage fraud scheme in Dayton, Ohio, that defrauded real estate investors and banks of more than $20 million. Mary J. Donaldson, Michael McWhirter, Jocelyn Hammond and others were also charged in the case with Davidson.

Kartesz Officially Pleads Guilty
Frank Kartesz II officially pleaded guilty to fraud and conspiracy charges in a mortgage fraud operation in Erie, Pa. The plea had been expected, and Kartesz is one of five people charged in relation to the scam.
read story from Erie Times-News

Budget Cuts Will Prove Costly to Mortgage Fraud
Not too long ago, Minnesota's Financial Crimes Task Force announced that it will stop mortgage fraud investigations as a result to budget cuts in the state. But mortgage fraud is a growing problem throughout the nation and is something that could end up costing people more than they think.
read story from Star Tribune

Mortgage Fraud Scam Suspect Expected to Plead Guilty
Frank Kartesz II is expected to plead guilty Monday to fraud and conspiracy charges in a mortgage fraud case in Erie, Pa. Robert L. Dodsworth, Gregory A. Finney, Francis R. Conti and Keith A. Rice are listed as his cohorts in the scheme. Dodsworth is the only other one to enter a guilty plea, though the rest are also up against charges of fraud and conspiracy.
read story from Erie Times-News

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