Advance Fee Loan Scams Lead to Prison

Allison Tussey —  January 26, 2015 — Leave a comment

Michael Pitamber Ramdat, 30, Palm Bay, Florida, was sentenced to 21 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution for a fraud scheme he perpetrated against business owners and others seeking lines of credit around the nation.

Ramdat pleaded guilty on June 11, 2014. According to the Plea Agreement, Ramdat and his partner, Leigh Farrington Fiske, operated a business referred to as “Corporate Funding Solutions.” The purported purpose of this business was to obtain credit lines for customers in exchange for a fee. Ramdat’s role was to vouch for the legitimacy of the business with victims recruited by Fiske, and to provide “customer service” by giving excuses to the victims.

In reality, neither Fiske nor Ramdat ever intended to provide any services to their customers. Instead, they accepted approximately $433,000 from approximately 30 victims and never helped any of these victims obtain credit. Ramdat admitted that he kept over $200,000 of these payments for himself. Monies obtained through the fraudulent scheme were funneled through banks that received Troubled Asset Relief Program funding.

Ramdat was indicted by a federal grand jury on Nov. 21, 2013, on five counts of wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1343, and one count of conspiracy, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349. Ramdat pleaded guilty to all counts.

The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Edward M. Chen, United States District Court Judge. Judge Chen also sentenced the defendant to a three year period of supervised release and restitution. The defendant is in custody and will begin serving the sentence immediately. Fiske was previously sentenced by Judge Chen to a term of imprisonment of 37 months.

United States Attorney Melinda Haag; Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP); and David Johnson, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) San Francisco Field Office.

Benjamin Kingsley is the Assistant U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting the case, with the assistance of Mary Mallory and Jessica Meegan. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by SIGTARP and the FBI.

Allison Tussey

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