Anthony Capuozzo, 39, Concord, Ohio, Nicholas Myles, 38, Mayfield, Ohio, and Kathryn Clover 30, Olmsted Falls, Ohio, have been charged in a criminal information with two counts of conspiracy.
The information alleges that during the period from about June 2005 through April 2006, Capuozzo, Myles, and Clover conspired with previously indicted defendants Uri Gofman, Anthony Viola, Gennadiy Simkhovich, Dave Pirichy, Howard Sieferd, Jr., Noah Bloch, and Paul A. Lesniak to purchase 34 properties in the Cleveland, Ohio area for over $2 million, of which 15 properties were purchased in Clover‘s name and 19 properties were purchased in Lesniak‘s name. The information further alleges that as part of their conspiracy, Clover and Lesniak completed and submitted false and fraudulent loan applications with the assistance of Myles and Pirichy, mortgage brokers for Central National Mortgage, LLC. The applications falsified employment, overstated income, overstated assets, falsified intent to occupy the property and concealed the source of the down-payment funds, which were in fact provided by Uri Gofman and Gennadiy Simkhovich through their company, Real Asset Fund, LLC, in order to obtain the financing to purchase the properties. The information alleges that Capuozzo, a licensed title agent through the State of Ohio and an owner of Family Title Service, Inc. and Howard Sieferd, Jr., an employee of Family Title, served as the title agency on the properties and conspired with defendants Uri Gofman, Anthony Viola and Gennadiy Simkhovich to allow the mortgage loan proceeds to be fraudulently and improperly distributed. The information alleges that the defendants did all of this in order to deceive and defraud Long Beach Mortgage Company, Argent Mortgage Company, LLC, and Mortgage IT, Inc. into funding the mortgage loans.
The defendants’ sentences will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal records, if any, each defendant’s role in the offense, and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases the sentences will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mark S. Bennett, following an investigation by the Cleveland Divisions of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and in conjunction with the Cuyahoga County Mortgage Fraud Task Force.
Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, announced the charges.
US Attorney Dettelbach stated that “Mortgage fraud has had a devastatingly negative impact on our community and, unfortunately, is continuing to happen. Our office has committed that one of our top priorities, along with our law enforcement partners, is to find and prosecute the perpetrators of mortgage fraud in order to eliminate it.”
An information is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.