Debra Phillips, 51, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to three years of probation on her conviction of Wire Fraud Conspiracy on connection with a mortgage fraud scheme.
As previously reported on Mortgage Fraud Blog, according to information presented to the court by Assistant United States Attorney Brendan T. Conway, Phillips, who was a licensed mortgage broker operating Equitable Lending, participated in a mortgage fraud conspiracy in which she submitted loan applications to lenders knowing that they contained false representations related to borrowers’ assets. Phillips also brokered loans in which borrowers concealed from the lenders that they were borrowing money to make the down payments for real estate purchases.
Acting United States Attorney Robert S. Cessar commended the Mortgage Fraud Task Force for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Phillips. The Mortgage Fraud Task Force is comprised of investigators from federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and others involved in the mortgage industry. Federal law enforcement agencies participating in the Mortgage Task Force include the United States Secret Service; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigations; the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General; and the United States Postal Inspection Service. Other Mortgage Fraud Task Force members include the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office; the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office, Bureau of Consumer Protection; the Pennsylvania Department of Banking; the Pennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Enforcement and Investigation; and the United States Trustee’s Office.