5 Defendants Charged With Loan Fraud

Allison Tussey —  July 29, 2009 — 2 Comments

On July 21, 2008, 5 defendants were charged in an eight-count Indictment for their participation in a mortgage fraud scheme that resulted in the issuance of more than $830,000 in mortgage loans:

Sixto Figueroa, 57, and his wife Susy Figueroa, 44, both of Miami, fraudulently sold residential lots in Port LaBelle, Florida. To effectuate their scheme, the Figueroas recruited individuals to pose as buyers of the properties. Among the straw buyers recruited and paid by the Figueroas were co-conspirators Rolando Herrera, 63, and Manuel Garcia, 40, both of Miami, Florda.

As part of the scheme, the Figueroas submitted fraudulent loan applications to Wachovia Bank. The applications contained false information regarding the straw buyers’ financial condition, including fraudulent tax returns and fabricated bank statements, which falsely suggested that the straw buyers had greater income and assets than they actually did. Additionally, the HUD-1 Settlement Statements provided to Wachovia falsely stated that the straw buyers would use their own money to pay closing obligations. In fact, however, the Figueroas paid all of the straw buyers’ closing obligations.

After the loans were approved, the bank wired the loan proceeds to defendant Yolanda Garcia-Montes‘s title company for closing. For three purported property sales, Garcia-Montes improperly released these funds to the Figueroas, who, in turn, used the money to pay the straw buyers’ cash to close obligations for those deals. After the closing, each of the Wachovia mortgage loans eventually went into default after the non-qualifying straw buyers failed to make the required mortgage payments, resulting in substantial losses to Wachovia.

Jeffrey H. Sloman, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, announced the indictment. The defendants were charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud and bank fraud. Mr. Sloman commended the investigative efforts of the Federal State Mortgage Fraud Strike Force with special commendation to the United States Secret Service and Miami-Dade Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph B. Shumofsky.

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Allison Tussey

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2 responses to 5 Defendants Charged With Loan Fraud

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  2. Lafonda Djonay July 29, 2009 at 1:54 pm

    Irwin Home Equity/Irwin Financial in California and Indiana are a horrible company to deal with. They have many former employees out there who will tell the whole truth about what shoddy business practices they employed to get loans through. They forged loan applications, they inflated applicants incomes and erased bad debt off of credit applications temporarily to get applications to go through. They then stood in line waiting for the homes to foreclose and opened another company called Franklin Financial in New York who purchases the homes back and re-sells them. They made money on both ends. The former employees have told many tales about the thousands of lawsuits against Irwin Home Equity/Irwin Financial. They paid off attorneys to get cases, almost all cases dismissed even when the law was clearly black and white in favor of the opposing party who was harmed by Irwin Home Equity. There is a couple in Pennsylvania who lost their home because of a $22 thousand dollar mistake on Irwin Home Equity’s part, the case was dismissed. They in their 50’s are now homeless. There are numerous stories of couples in Indiana who lost their home to Irwin’s mistakes and had absolutely no recourse in court because of Irwin’s far reaching lobbying efforts and campaign donations. There is a couple in Michigan who lost their home because of a mistake Irwin made and refused to fix. We are told this case was also dismissed because of their far reaching lobbying efforts and campaign donations. All of these people, over 200 of them are now left homeless because of Irwin Home Equity/Irwin Financial/ Irwin Union Bank’s despicable business practices and predatory lending, unfair business practices, gutter dealings. Do not do business with Irwin Home Equity/Irwin Financial/ Irwin Union Bank you will loose your home to foreclosure and end up homeless just as the people mentioned in this article have ended up. If the prospect of living in your car and showering at truck stops does not sound like a breath of fresh air to you look to have your mortgage funded elsewhere!

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