Michael Samuda, 37, Pembroke Pines and Weston, Florida, Monique Mitchell, 29, Pembroke Pines, Florida, and Sheldon Martin, 34, Plantation, Florida, have been charged in a recently unsealed indictment alledging mortgage fraud. Both Mitchell and Martin appeared at the Federal Courthouse in West Palm Beach tuesday, April 20, 2010, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Linnea Johnson. Samuda was scheduled to appear on April 21, 2010.
Michael Samuda, an attorney, was charged in one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371, one count of substantive mail fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1341, four counts of substantive wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343. and one count of making false statements on a HUD-1 Form, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001. If convicted, Samuda faces a maximum statutory sentence of five years in prison on each of the conspiracy and the false statement counts, up to 30 years on each count of mail fraud and wire fraud count, and up to 5 years in prison on the false statement count. Defendants Monique Mitchell and Sheldon Martin, a mortgage broker, are charged with one count of making false statements on a HUD-1 Form, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001, and face up to 5 years in prison on that count.
According to the indictment, Samuda operated a title escrow company called Attorney Title Center, in Pembroke Pines. In January 2008, Samuda‘s company closed on the purchase of real estate at 4010 Bayview Drive, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The indictment alleges that Samuda, along with his employee Mitchell and the seller Sheldon Martin engaged in a scheme to defraud Regions Bank, the mortgage lender, by preparing and submitting false closing documents, including a HUD-1 Settlement Statement Form on the $1,250,000 property sale.
Jeffrey H. Sloman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida commended the investigative efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the State of Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Kay.
An indictment is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven.