Friday, April 08, 2016

Quintet Cop Guilty Pleas For Roles In Nationwide Racket That Peddled Phony Loan Modification Services; More Than 400 Homeowners Were Fleeced Out Of Over $3.8 Million

From the Office of the U.S. Attorney (Alexandria, Virginia):
  • Five California men have pleaded guilty for their roles in a nationwide home loan modification scam that defrauded over 400 homeowners out of over $3.8 million.

    Roscoe Umali, 38; Jefferson Maniscan, 34; Raymund Dacanay, 47; Isaac Perez, 33; and Joshua Johnson, 36, all resided in the greater Los Angeles area.

    According to statements of facts filed with their plea agreements, from at least October 2012 through September 2014, the defendants and their co-conspirators targeted struggling homeowners and made a series of misrepresentations to induce those homeowners to make payments of thousands of dollars in exchange for supposed home loan modification assistance.

    Operating under the names of fictional companies like “Equity Restoration Group,” the defendants falsely held themselves out as a non-profit organization or as affiliated with a real government program, the “Home Affordable Modification Program” (HAMP), designed to help homeowners at risk of foreclosure.

    Through mass mailings, phone calls, faxes, and emails with their victims, the defendants convinced homeowners to send them “reinstatement fees” and to make several monthly “trial mortgage payments” to the conspiracy, rather than to the homeowners’ lenders. The defendants then did nothing to help modify any mortgages. Instead, they used the victims’ payments for their own personal benefit and to further the fraud scheme.

    This scam victimized over 400 individuals and families nationwide, resulting in a total loss of over $3.8 million. It also resulted in many victims losing their homes, despite the victims’ efforts to modify their mortgages and continue to make payments on their loans.

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