Jonas Rogers, 54, Detroit, Michigan, was sentenced to 78 months in prison for his role in a mortgage fraud and identity theft scheme.
Rogers was sentenced in U.S. District Court by Judge Lawrence Zatkoff.
Rogers was found guilty by a federal jury in June 2012 of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering. Evidence presented at trial showed that in September 2006, Rogers and others used a qualified straw buyer to purchase an “investment” property in an upscale neighborhood in Oakland County for $799,000. The property was financed with what was then called an 80/20 loan, where the financial institution provides two mortgages covering the entire price of the property with “zero down” from the buyer.
Rogers lived in the property for a few months. When the bank sought payments on the house, Rogers convinced the straw buyer to flip the house and sell it for more money. In April 2007, the property was “sold” for $1.1 million to an impostor using the stolen identity of a local doctor. A new mortgage in the amount of $990,000 was obtained and the straw buyer received $62,786 at the closing. Evidence showed that this money was subsequently transferred to Rogers in large sums of cash or through checks made payable to his mother. No payments were made on the new mortgage and the property went into foreclosure.
United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced the sentence.
Joining in the announcement was Robert D. Foley, III, Special Agent in Charge of the Detroit Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Abed Hammoud.