Friday, July 03, 2015

Fresno Feds Reel In Seven Suspects In Another Alleged Real Estate Short Sale Fraud Conspiracy Targeting At Least 25 Underwater Homes; Lenders Take $3M+ Financial Hit

From the Office of the U.S. Attorney (Fresno, California):
  • A federal grand jury returned a 15-count indictment [...] against seven individuals, charging them with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and bank fraud, mail fraud and aiding and abetting, and making false statements to a bank in a mortgage fraud scheme, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.

    Jyoteshna Karan, 43, and Praveen Singh, 36, were arrested [...] at their home in Modesto. Mahendra Prasad, 53, was arrested [...] at his home in Fremont. The remaining defendants each received a summons to appear for arraignment: Phul Singh, 79; and Sunita Singh, 60, both of Modesto, Nani Isaac, 69, of Ceres, and Martin Bahrami, 42, of Turlock.

    According to court documents, the defendants conspired to defraud mortgage lending companies and financial institutions by making false statements on loan applications and short-sale applications in order to obtain properties under their names and the names of others. The false statements included statements relating to the defendants’ employment, their familial relationship, income, and their intent to occupy the home as their primary residence.

    According to the indictment, the conspiracy encompassed at least 25 properties from Sacramento to Modesto. As a result of the scheme, lenders lost in excess of $3 million.

    ***

    “The partnership between the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office, federal agencies and the U.S. Attorney’s Office allows us to investigate the most complex real estate fraud cases at the local level and yet prosecute at the federal level to ensure full accountability. This is a true benefit to the community,” said Stanislaus County District Attorney Birgit Fladager.

    The short sale process is intended to assist legitimately distressed homeowners,” said Leslie DeMarco, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Housing Finance Agency Office of Inspector General. “Our investigation disclosed that Karan and others allegedly manipulated the process for their personal gain. FHFA-OIG is committed to ensuring that real estate professionals maintain the highest ethical standards, which in turn will protect taxpayers.”
For the news release, see Seven Indicted for $3 Million Mortgage Fraud Conspiracy (Scheme Involved 25 Properties from Modesto to Sacramento).

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