Real Estate Broker Sent to Prison for Defrauding Lenders

Allison Tussey —  January 21, 2015 — Leave a comment

Christopher Wayne White, 44, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, a real estate broker was sentenced by U.S. District Judge William P. Dimitrouleas to 41 months in prison, three years supervised release and ordered to pay $4,029,892, in restitution to victims in three separate fraud cases.

The defendant pled guilty on November 21, 2014, to one count of wire fraud.  According to documents filed with the court, White made numerous false statements to the mortgage lender in connection with the purchase of a luxury home on Sea Island Drive, Fort Lauderdale.

According to court records, White inflated his bank account balances, income, deposit and assets to fraudulently induce the mortgage lender to issue a mortgage loan in excess of $4.9 million dollars.  The property was subsequently foreclosed by the lender resulting in substantial losses.

In a second case, White pled guilty on November 21, 2014 to six counts of wire fraud.  According to court documents, White was a licensed real estate broker and owner and operator of the Christopher White Group, Fort Lauderdale. White obtained multiple real estate deposits in excess of $750,000 via wire transfers involving properties in Broward County from individuals and refused to return the escrow deposits.  Subsequently, the Secretary of Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation ordered an emergency suspension of White’s real estate broker’s license.

In the third case, White also pled guilty on November 21, 2014 to three counts of making material false statements to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.  According to documents filed with the court, these statements were included on White’s April 16, 2014, application for naturalization submitted to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. White made the following material false statements in his naturalization application: (1) that he had never claimed to be a U.S. Citizen; (2) that he had never committed, assisted in committing or attempted to commit a crime or offense for which he was never arrested; and (3) that he had never failed to support his dependents.

Wifredo A. Ferrer, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, FBI, Miami Field Office, Alysa D. Erichs, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), Drew J. Breakspear, Commissioner, Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation, and Scott Israel, Sheriff, Broward Sheriff’s Office, made the announcement.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI, ICE-HSI, Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation, and the Broward Sheriff’s Office. Mr. Ferrer also thanked the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation for their assistance. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Randy Katz and Thomas P. Lanigan.

Allison Tussey

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