Rosa Garcia, 37, New London, Connecticut, was sentenced by Senior United States District Judge Alfred V. Covello in Hartford to 14 months of probation, all of which Garcia must serve in home confinement, for her participation in an eastern Connecticut mortgage fraud scheme.
According to court documents and statements made in court, from approximately 2004 to 2007, Jose Guzman and others used mortgage brokerage, property management and home improvement companies to arrange for individuals (“borrowers”) to purchase real estate, primarily residential housing properties located in New London County, by obtaining funding from various mortgage companies and mortgage originators after submitting false information on the borrowers’ mortgage loan applications. The fraudulent information included information regarding income, assets, employment, rent history, as well as the borrowers’ intention to make the properties their primary residence. The borrowers were compensated for participating in the scheme.
Garcia was an employee of Guzman‘s real estate, mortgage brokerage, and property management businesses, and she aided Guzman and his partners in the buying and selling of properties. During the conspiracy, Garcia assisted in the preparation and submission of fraudulent closing documentation to lenders, including verification of rent, verification of deposits and verification of employment. Also, when Garcia was called by lenders seeking to verify the information contained in the submitted documents, she would confirm the false information.
According to previously filed court documents, the government believes that more than 200 fraudulent mortgages were funded through this mortgage fraud scheme, causing more than $9 million in losses to lenders.
As part of her sentence, Judge Covello ordered Garcia to pay restitution in the amount of $1,663,149.69.
On May 17, 2010, Garcia pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud. Fifteen other individuals, including Jose Guzman, have been convicted of various charges stemming from this scheme. Guzman awaits sentencing.
This matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Michael S. McGarry and David T. Huang.
David B. Fein, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced the sentence.
In July 2009, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced the formation of the Connecticut Mortgage Fraud Task Force to investigate and prosecute mortgage fraud cases and related financial crimes occurring in Connecticut. Citizens are encouraged to report any suspected mortgage fraud activity by calling 203-333-3512 and requesting the Connecticut Mortgage Fraud Task Force, or by sending an email to email@example.com.
The Connecticut Mortgage Fraud Task Force includes representatives from the U.S. Attorney’s Office; Federal Bureau of Investigation; Internal Revenue Service ““ Criminal Investigation; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General; Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of Inspector General, and State of Connecticut Department of Banking.
To report financial fraud crimes, and to learn more about the President’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, please visit www.stopfraud.gov.