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Pennsylvania Man Gets 6.5 Years in Prison for Mortgage Fraud

A man from West Mifflin, Pennsylvania, was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison and three years of probation for his role in running a massive mortgage fraud scheme. He was convicted on counts of conspiracy to commit bank and wire fraud.

The 50-year-old man pleaded guilty to the charges in August.  He had previously owned and operated Century III Home Equity, one of the largest mortgage brokerages in western Pennsylvania. Between 2002 and 2008, the company brokered hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of mortgage loans. Many of these loans included at least one instance of fraud, according to prosecutors.

Examples of these issues included false appraisals, backdated documents, documents with missing information regarding secondary financing and fees paid to the company and falsified down payment amounts. The man also was found to have hidden kickbacks he received from the settlement company.

Even a loan used for his $300,000 vacation home in Seven Springs included false statements about the sales price, his income and the total value of his assets.

Fraud a widespread problem in lending industry

The Pennsylvania Mortgage Fraud Task Force has revealed more than $500 million in fraudulent loans since 2008, with this recent case serving as a common example. Fraud is a widespread problem in the lending industry, and in many cases, is only revealed because of the actions of whistleblowers.

If you have been charged with a type of fraud or white-collar crime, seek the skilled legal counsel of trusted Reading criminal defense attorney David R. Eshelman.


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