Man Charged with Real Estate “Advance Fee” Scheme

admin —  June 22, 2010 — Leave a comment

Tony Huy Havens, 36, Modesto, California, has been charged in a 30 count indictment with wire fraud and criminal forfeiture.

According to the indictment, Havens targeted victims in at least eight states who were seeking multi-million dollar loans for large construction projects that were in danger of foreclosure. Havens provided the victims with fraudulent documents that showed a third-party lender was prepared to make a loan to the victim. On Havens’ instructions, the victims wire transferred money into a bank account controlled by Havens to pay in advance certain costs associated with the loans. No loans were ever made. In total, Havens represented that he could arrange at least $1.1 billion in financing for at least fifteen victim borrowers, and collected at least $248,750 by wire transfers from these victim borrowers.

The maximum statutory penalty for a violation of wire fraud is twenty years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner made the announcement.

This case is the product of an extensive/joint investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Mark J. McKeon is prosecuting the case.

The charges are only allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

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