Fred DeGuzman, San Antonio, Texas, was sentenced to 75 months in federal prison for carrying out a mortgage fraud scheme involving three San Antonio and Spring Branch, Texas, residential properties, three financial institutions and over $1,000,000 in foreseeable losses. In addition, United States District Judge Xavier Rodriguez ordered that DeGuzman pay $1,665,000.00 restitution to his victims and be placed under supervised release for a period of five years after completing his prison term.
As previously reported by Mortgage Fraud Blog, Fred De Guzman pleaded guilty to one count each of financial institution fraud and aggravated identity theft on November 18, 2008. On February 20, 2009, Fred‘s wife, Veronica DeGuzman, was sentenced to 75 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to the same charges.
By pleading guilty, the defendants admitted that from June 25, 2007, to November 5, 2007, Fred DeGuzman, using an alias, and Veronica DeGuzman contacted individual sellers of residential property and entered into agreements to purchase the property for an inflated price, with the excess of the stated price over the actual sales price being returned to a corporation owned and controlled by the defendants. Using the alias, as well as falsified employment and income information, Fred and Veronica DeGuzman applied for and obtained 100% financing. After one or two mortgage payments, the mortgage went into default causing losses to the lenders.
“This husband and wife team intentionally abused a system designed to help people achieve the dream of home ownership,” stated Acting U.S. Attorney John E. Murphy. “Mortgage Fraud undermines the stability of mortgage lenders, limits the amount of funds available to legitimate borrowers and causes a ripple effect in the housing industry.”
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as part of a nationwide crackdown on mortgage fraud called Operation Malicious Mortgage. Assistant United States Attorney William R. Harris prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.