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Last Updated Friday, June 13, 2008 10:00 PM Texas Time

June 13, 2008

Mortgage Co. Owner Arrested in Largest Mortgage Fraud Scheme in Md. History
Joy J. Jackson, owner of Metropolitan Money Store Corp. in Lanham, Md., was arrested on charges of money laundering and mail and wire fraud. Officials say she stole $10 million in equity from homeowners facing foreclosure and that the scheme involved more than $35 million in fraudulent loans and mortgages.

Jackson, 40, and husband, Kurt Fordham, 38, are both charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, six counts of money laundering and 15 counts of mail fraud. Others arrested were Jennifer McCall, 46, her husband, Clifford McCall, their daughter Chandra Jones, 30, Wilbur Ballesteros, 32, Fordham’s sister, Katisha, 35, and Ronald Chapman. All face mail and wire fraud charges. In addition, Jennifer and Clifford McCall and Jones are each charged with one count of money laundering.

Settlement Agent Steals $13 Million in Refi Proceeds
The former president of a national settlement agent has admitted to duping mortgage lenders out of $13 million in proceeds from refinance loans.
Read story at MortgageDaily.com

Tampa Man Sentenced for Wire Fraud and ID Theft
Luis Uribe was sentenced to eight and a half years in jail for one count of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. He had pleaded guilty on March 27.
Read story at Tampa Bay Business Journal

June 12, 2008

U.S. Rep. and Texas Businessman Named in Indictment for Fraud
James W. Sandlin, 57, was convicted of two counts of submitting a false statement to a federally insured financial institution. Sandlin failed to disclose a $996,000 debt obligations on documents submitted to Independent Bank in Sherman, Wash. If convicted, Sandlin faces a maximum of 30 years’ imprisonment for each count.

In a separate indictment, Sandlin is charged with conspiracy, honest services mail and wire fraud and extortion along with U.S. Representative Richard G. Renzi of Flagstaff, Ariz. and Andrew Beardall of Rockville, Md. Trial is set to begin Oct. 14, 2008.

New Mortgage Laws in Missouri
Missouri Governor Matt Blunt yesterday signed a bill that creates civil and criminal penalties for fraudulent mortgage practices and informs consumers of various mortgage processes.
Read story at Springfield Business Journal

Imprisoned Mortgage Broker Sentenced Again for Wire Fraud
Luis Javier Uribe, 28, is serving a 34-month sentence for mortgage fraud and has been sentenced to another 8-1/2 years for running a similar scheme. In the latest fraud case, Uribe falsified 32 loans and took lenders for about $6 million.
Read story at St. Petersburg Times

Mich. Woman Approves Fraudulent Ohio Loans
Kenyatta Johnson, 28, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and wire fraud that involved more than 200 borrowers and $25 million. If convicted, Johnson facts up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. She is the seventh of nine defendants to plead guilty in connection with this case.
Read story at Columbus Dispatch

FBI Diverting Field Agents to Investigate Mortgage Fraud
Two-dozen field offices have been told to redirect their efforts on escalating mortgage fraud and the subprime crisis that has caused almost $400 billion in losses and write-downs on Wall Street.
Read story at Bloomberg.com

June 11, 2008

Former Tampa Housing Authority Official Sentenced
Carlton Miles, 38, was sentenced to two years in prison and three years supervised release for recruiting friends to pose as Section 8 landlords to receive fraudulent rent subsidy checks. In addition, Miles was ordered to pay more than $140,000 in restitution.

Ashley Hepburn, 25, was sentenced to two months in prison and two months home detention for posing as a landlord for another former THA official, Mario Lovett. For his part, Lovett was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay $180,000 in restitution. Hepburn was ordered to pay $22,000.

So far, 16 people have pleaded guilty to federal charges in connection with the scheme, ten of which have already received sentences ranging from probation to two years in prison.

Ten Years Mortgage Fraud Costs Investors and Lenders $120 Million
Wayne Puff, 60, owner of NJ Affordable Homes is being charged one count of wire fraud and obstruction of justice for his $80 million part of the New Jersey scheme. Four former NJ Affordable employees and two appraisers have pleaded guilty in connection with this case and several have implicated Puff. If convicted, Puff faces 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
Read story at NJ

Group Calls for Resignation of Mich. Attorney General
Michigan is hovering in the top three for highest mortgage fraud incidence across the nation. An advocacy group is putting the blame on Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox’s weak efforts and has called for his resignation.
Read story at The Detroit News

Trial Continues for Trio in Kentucky
William Bowling Jr., 46, of Charlotte, N.C., Georgia Bowling, 64, of Franklin and Gregg Russell, 54, of Middletown have been charge with conspiracy to commit fraud. The trio allegedly tried to defraud a mortgage broker out of $3.5 million.
Read story at Middletown Journal

June 10, 2008

“A” Rated Insurance Carriers Partner with Interthinx
Interthinx FraudGUARD is now available as part of the automated underwriting engine. The software assists in fraud detection and regulatory compliance tools for the mortgage industry.

Missouri Man Sells Same Property Twice, Gets Loan on Sold Property
Daryl W. Miller faces up to 20 years in prison and fines up to $250,000 when he is sentenced on September 4. He pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud which cost Commonwealth Land Title $190,000. Miller sold two properties then took out a loan from NovaStar Mortgage Inc. on one and re-sold the other to a purchaser who borrowed from Truman Bank.

S. C. Creates Hotline to Report Mortgage Fraud
The state’s attorney general and the Department of Consumer Affairs recently announced the placement of a toll-free hotline for reporting suspected cases of mortgage fraud.
Read story at WJBF-TV News

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