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Cash Back Mortgage Fraud

$1.5 Million Property Used in Scheme

Miami, Fla. - (Nov. 19, 2008) R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Betty N. Stewart, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, and Broward County Sheriff Al Lamberti announced the November 18, 2008 sentencing of the final two defendants for their participation in mortgage fraud scheme. Sentenced today were defendants Dayanara Montero, of Miramar, FL, and Reinaldo Tudela, of Miami, FL. Both defendants were sentenced to 21 months’ imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Both defendants had previously pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349. These were the last of five defendants charged in a cash back at closing mortgage fraud scheme in U.S. v. Talavera et. al., Case No 08-60092-CR-ZLOCH.

According to the Indictment and information obtained during the pleas, Dahomey Talavera, of Southwest Ranches, FL, Osbelia Lazardi, of Southwest Ranches, FL, Sandra Campo, of Doral, FL, and defendants Dayanara Montero and Reinaldo Tudela conspired to fraudulently purchase a property located at 6402 SW 185Way, in the Southwest Ranches area of Broward County (“the property”). Talavera, who had obtained the home fraudulently, agreed to sell the house to Lazardi for $1.5 million. The two agreed that Talavera would use the purchase money to pay off her existing mortgage , and then give cash back to Lazardi after closing. To purchase the home from Talavera, Lazardi, with the assistance of mortgage broker Sandra Campo, bookkeeper Reinaldo Tudela, and Dayanara Montero, submitted fraudulent employment documents indicating that her income was more than $32,000 per month. As a result, she received mortgages totaling $1.3 million on the property. Pursuant to their prior agreement, Talavera transferred $538,717.20 at the closing to D1A flooring, a company associated with Lazardi. Lazardi received this money and then transferred $115,000 to Montero, keeping the balance.

Talavera, Lazardi, and Campo each pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349. They were recently sentenced to sentences of 17 months, 21 months and 13 months in prison, respectively.

Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the Internal Revenue Service, and the Broward County Sheriff’’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Lanigan.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

SOURCE: United States Attorney's Office
Southern District of Florida

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