John A. Bui, 46, of San Jose, California was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $3,500,000 in forfeiture as a result of his convictions for conspiring to commit wire fraud, destruction of records in a federal investigation, and witness tampering.
As previously reported on Mortgage Fraud Blog and per court information, Mr. Bui pleaded guilty to these charges on August 21, 2009. In pleading guilty, Bui admitted that, in a scheme that began no later than 2003 and continued until approximately April 30, 2009, he defrauded mortgage lenders and financial institutions by providing false and fraudulent information in support of mortgage loan applications. Working out of an office in Milpitas, California, Bui and his employees assisted individuals who wanted to obtain mortgages from mortgage lenders so they could purchase residential properties in the Northern California and elsewhere. As a part of this scheme, Bui routinely transmitted fraudulent loan applications to mortgage lenders that contained false employment information and false and inflated income and bank account information. The information was intended to inflate the borrowers’ creditworthiness. In addition, the loan applications were supported by false and forged documents that purported to verify the borrowers’ employment, income, and assets. Bui and other members of the scheme used a network of co-conspirators who agreed to pose as the borrowers’ employers and to falsely verify to the mortgage lenders the accuracy of the employment and income information listed on the loan applications. As a result of Bui’s participation in this conspiracy, he illegally earned at least $3.5 million. To date, Bui has paid $460,000 in forfeiture toward the $3.5 million he has been ordered to repay.
Bui also admitted at the time of his guilty plea that on or about May 2, 2009, after learning that agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation had executed a search warrant on the San Francisco office of a co-conspirator, he destroyed and caused to be destroyed substantially all of the loan files in his possession with the intent of preventing the FBI from obtaining evidence of his mortgage fraud activities.
Bui also admitted that on or about May 28, 2009, he caused a letter to be delivered to an individual located within the Northern California who he believed was cooperating with the FBI’s investigation. Bui’s letter asked the individual not to provide information to the FBI agents assigned to the investigation.
The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Susan Ilston. Judge Illston also sentenced the defendant to a three year period of supervised release to follow his prison term. Bui has been in custody since May 2009.
United States Attorney Joseph P. Russoniello made the announcement.
Jeffrey Rabkin and Jeffrey Finigan are the Assistant U.S. Attorneys who are prosecuting the case with the assistance of Elizabeth Garcia and Rayneisha Booth. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.