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Archives July 30, 2006



Fraud News Wire

Last Updated Saturday, July 29, 2006, 02:31 PM Texas Time

$6.5 Million Fraud Ring Broken Up

A Cincinnati mortgage broker and a loan processor were among 20 people guilty of participating in a massive fraud ring that stung the likes of IndyMac Bank and ABM AMRO.

Guilty pleas from Cathy Yocum, Milton Trice III and Gene W. Hite bring to 20 the number of people convicted in the federal probe into property flipping, fraud and income tax evasion.Among the lenders scammed were Indy Mac Bank and ABM AMRO.

The fraud, which the feds have investigated for more than two years, involved nearly 200 homes, 28 lenders and loans totaling $6.5 million, court documents show.

Ringleader Ron Trester of Cincinnati, the former owner of Charter First Banc mortgage brokerage, pleaded guilty in October to charges of conspiracy, bank fraud and tax invasion. He landed a prison term of 46 months.

read Patrick's full story from MortgageDaily.com
(subscription required)

KC Fraud Case Involved 280 Loans

A mortgage fraud case that has emerged out of Kansas City involves 280 loans for more than $17 million.

Jeffrey Tyler Wine appeared to be a young, aggressive entrepreneur trying to take advantage of Kansas City's real estate market.

Through Sunrise Equities and other real estate investment companies he operated, Wine, 28, was gobbling up houses he bought at reduced rates at foreclosure, tax and bankruptcy sales.

Then, after rehabbing the houses, he put them up for sale as investment properties.

read Patrick's full story at MortgageDaily.com

July 29, 2006

24 Fraud Indictments
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Philadelphia touted the indictment of 24 people for identity theft and mortgage fraud.

Wholesaler Avoids Fraud w/Appraisal Technology
Alt-A mortgage wholesale lender ION Capital uses technology that helps verify accurate property values as a deterrant to mortgage fraud.

Flagstar Integrates Interthinx
Mortgage lender Flagstar Banks hopes to curtail mortgage fraud activity on its loans by implementing a service that compares all of the data from a pending loan.

Fraud Prevention Goes Local
Workshops will be held during August in Kansas City and Boston to help real estate professionals understand mortgage fraud.

Ohio Targets Fraud
The FBI's Cleveland office has formed a multi-agency task force to combat mortgage fraud while the Cuyahoga County prosecutor's office has hired an attorney to handle cases investigated by local police.
read story from the Plain Dealer .

Father, Son Defrauded 1,600 Investors
John Heath and his son Daniel Heath allegedly operated their company, D.W. Heath & Associates, as a Ponzi scheme -- taking in $192 million from over 1,600 investors.
read story from The Press Enterprise .

Scam Avoidance Tips
Delinquent borrowers are advised to contact their lenders and discuss options available before working with a foreclosure scam firm.
read story from Associated Content .

Mortgage Banking Exec Going to Prison
Roger Duane Mason, the former president and CEO of American Bantrust Mortgage Services Corp., was sentenced to over three years in prison for a check kiting scheme.
read story from The Arizona Republic .

State Trooper Sentenced for Fraud
Thomas Henry, a Pennsylvania state trooper, was sentenced to three years' probation for participating in a group that committed mortgage fraud on 27 loans.
read story from KDKA 2 .

Houston Hotspot for Fraud
An anonymous Houston-area woman talks about how she was duped into mortgage fraud schemes and is now burdened with payments she cannot afford.
read story from KPRC Local 2 .

DOJ Seeking Reduced Sentence for Kingpin
Michael Fanghells, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison for bilking PinnFund investors out of $330 million, has the U.S. Attorney's Office attempting to get his sentenced reduced.
read story from the North County Times .

read full coverage of Fanghella at MortgageDaily.com .

All In the Family
Darrell Wayne Dowden, his wife Tiffany Winkler Dowden and her mother, Veronica Lindsey Winklere have admitted committing $6 million in mortgage fraud on Texas properties.
read story from the Dallas Morning News .

Massive Philly Fraud Ring
Federal prosecutors charged 24 people Wednesday in Philadelphia of fraud crimes including Vincent Sirolli, owner of Encore Mortgage Services, involving 10 defendants that could cost mortgage lenders as much as $11 million.
read story from the Philadelphia Business Journal .

Assessor Sounds Fire Alarm
The Orange County Assessor's Office sent a real estate fraud alert to about 820,000 borrowers warning about mortgage fraud and title scams.
read story from the Orange County Register .

Mortgage Wholesalers' Activity Limited
Wholesale lenders are unable to discriminate against minorities because it is the mortgage brokers who are their customers that control much of the activity up to the closing.
read story from Inman .

A new indictment in the Richard Lucas mortgage fraud case is being questioned by defense attorneys and supersedes a January indictement charging 10 people.
read story from the Hattiesburg American .

New York Bill Targets Mortgage Fraud
The New York Assembly and Senate passed the Home Equity Theft Prevention Act, which would make it a felony to steal someone's home through deed theft.
read story from the Times Union .

Beware the Charm
The Mountain States Better Business Bureau warned local borrowers about dealing with foreclosure scam artists who appeal personally but misleads desperate borrowers.
read story from the Jackson Hole Star Tribune .

BBB Issues Fraud Alert
The Better Business Bureau is warning borrowers to avoid shady mortgage rescue firms that aim to steal the property and attempt to negotiate with lenders.
read story from the Mercury News .

Michigan Lawmakers Crack Down on Fraud
Michigan legislation could increase the penalties for mortgage fraud and tap a state Real Estate Enforcement Fund.
read story from The Ann Arbor News .

Mortgage Fraud Tops $1 billion
Mortgage executives and law-enforcement officials say mortgage fraud exceeded $1 billion during the last fiscal year.
read story from The New York Times .

Patrick Crowley is fraud journalist for MortgageDaily.com and a reporter and columnist for The Cincinnati Enquirer.

Email Patrick at: PatCrowley@FraudBlogger.com
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