Broker Gets Prison Sentence for Straw Buyer Scheme

Allison Tussey —  March 9, 2012 — Leave a comment

Jinnie Mathurin, 42, Coral Springs, Florida, a mortgage broker, has been sentenced by U.S. District Judge Donald M. Middlebrooks to a year and one day in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. In addition, the Court ordered her to pay more than $1.17 million in restitution. Mathurin had previously pled guilty to one count of wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343.

According to documents filed in the case and statements made in court, defendant Mathurin was a mortgage broker licensed by the State of Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation. Mathurin and others engaged in a scheme to enrich themselves by fraudulently causing Broward County real estate to be bought and sold through straw buyers who obtained high value mortgages based upon fraudulent mortgage loan applications and closing statements.

Furthermore, the defendant and others submitted documents to the mortgage lenders reflecting a significantly inflated price for the properties than the true value of the properties. Based on the false documents submitted to financial institutions, mortgage lenders issued approximately $2,835,000 in loans to the defendants and others.

Defendant Guhier Florvilus, a straw buyer in the same mortgage fraud scheme, pled guilty on to one count of wire fraud on November 3, 2011, and is scheduled to be sentenced on May 14, 2012. Defendant Michelle Austin-Wilks, the owner and operator of a title company allegedly involved in the scheme, was charged by criminal complaint with wire fraud on February 9, 2012. Both Florvilus and Austin-Wilks face up to thirty years’ imprisonment on the wire fraud charges.

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Paula Reid, Special Agent in Charge, United States Secret Service, Miami Field Office, and Tom Grady, Commissioner, State of Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation, announced the sentencing.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the U.S. Secret Service and Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Randy Katz.

Allison Tussey

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