Archives For false bank statements

Casey David Crowther, 35, Fort Myers, Florida has been sentenced to three years and one month in federal prison for two counts of bank fraud, two counts of making a false statement to a lending institution, and two counts of money laundering.

At trial, a federal jury had found Crowther guilty of committing bank fraud, making a false statement to a lending institution, and two counts of money laundering on March 26, 2021, which were related to a PPP fraud scheme. Before the trial started, Crowther pleaded guilty to one count of bank fraud and one count of making a false statement to a financial institution, which were related to a mortgage fraud scheme. As part of the mortgage fraud scheme, Crowther created false bank statements to justify a loan he had used to purchase a nearly $1.3 million waterfront house in St. James City, Florida.

According to evidence at the trial, Crowther obtained a $2.1 million PPP loan by falsely stating that he had intended to use the money to make payroll and pay rent and utilities for his company Target Roofing and Sheet Metal, Inc. However, Crowther intended to use the money to enrich himself and, once the loan was obtained, quickly used the proceeds to make a series of personal purchases including a nearly $700,000 boat and a $100,000 payment to a former business partner. Crowther concealed the scheme by providing false explanations for the expenditures to his bank, calling the boat “equipment” and the payment to his former partner “payroll.” Under the terms of the PPP program, Crowther did not have to pay back the loan if he used at least 60% of the proceeds on payroll. To falsely make it appear he met that threshold, Crowther created dozens of fake employees to whom he purportedly paid wages: by adding multiple family members to his company’s payroll, even though they did not actually perform work; and, separately, by creating 39 other fake employees, for whom he obtained fake identification documents — including Social Security cards — that he provided to his company’s Human Resources to be placed in the files of the “employees.”

The court also ordered Crowther to forfeit $2,739,081.21, $630,482.37, and a 40’ catamaran boat, which were the proceeds of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) fraud and the mortgage fraud offenses.

This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Trent Reichling and Michael V. Leeman. Assistant United States Attorney Suzanne Nebesky obtained the forfeitures.

Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form

Nathanael Zimmerman, 40, Wyckoff, New Jersey, was arrested today on charges of engaging in mortgage fraud, fraudulently obtaining an SBA loan, and stealing another person’s identity

According to the complaint:

From August 2013 through January 2014, Zimmerman orchestrated a scheme to engage in mortgage fraud concerning Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured loans. Zimmerman aided individuals in applying for FHA-insured loans and caused fraudulent representations to be made to the lenders, including submitting false bank statements. Zimmerman received a portion of the loan proceeds. Later, these unqualified individuals defaulted on their loans, causing losses to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development of more than $300,000.

In 2020 Zimmerman used his deceased brother’s identity to obtain a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). Zimmerman received more than $150,000 by applying for EIDL funds in his brother’s name and using his brother’s personal identification information.

The charges of wire fraud affecting a financial institution and bank fraud are each punishable by a maximum potential penalty of 30 years in prison and a fine of $1 million, or twice the gross profits or twice the gross loss suffered by the victims, whichever is greater. The charge of aggravated identity theft is punishable by a mandatory consecutive term of imprisonment of two years in prison and a fine of $250,000, twice the gross profits or twice the gross loss suffered by the victims, whichever is greater.

Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig made the announcement.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., in Newark, and special agents of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Christina Scaringi, with the investigation leading to today’s arrest.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sammi Malek and Andrew Kogan of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark.

The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.

 

Casey David Crowther ,35, North Fort Myers, Florida has been charged in a superseding indictment with two counts of bank fraud, two counts of making a false statement to a lending institution, and three counts of illegal monetary transactions.

According to the superseding indictment, as part of his scheme, beginning in June of 2020, Crowther submitted false and fraudulent Uniform Residential Loan Applications (URLA) to a mortgage broker and mortgage lender, causing the lender to disburse approximately $640,381 in loan funds. Specifically, Crowther intentionally misrepresented his liquid assets in the URLAs and created false and fraudulent bank statements which purported to show he had more assets than he actually had.

If convicted, Crowther faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison on each bank fraud and false statement count, and up to 10 years’ imprisonment for each illegal monetary transaction count.

The indictment also notifies Crowther that the United States intends to forfeit a 2020 40-foot catamaran, real property in St. James City, Florida, and $2,098,700, which are alleged to be proceeds of the offenses; the real property is also subject to forfeiture because it was involved in the illegal monetary transaction.

A federal grand jury had previously indicted Crowther for COVID relief fraud on September 23, 2020. The superseding indictment contains additional counts charging Crowther with mortgage fraud.

A superseding indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez made the announcement.

This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Trent Reichling.

Cabral Simpson, 43, Belleville, New Jersey, was arraigned today on charges that he engaged in a conspiracy to commit mortgage fraud that resulted in potential losses in excess of $1 million.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Simpson, a real estate investor, and his conspirators engaged in mortgage fraud by creating fake bank statements and fake employee verification records for buyers of properties and transferring money into the buyers’ bank accounts for payment of the deposit for a property. Simpson and his conspirators submitted fraudulent mortgage loan applications, supporting documents, and closing documents on behalf of the buyers. They induced lenders to issue more than $1 million in loans, resulting in defaults and exposing the lenders and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to more than $1 million in potential losses. 

The conspiracy and wire fraud counts with which Simpson is charged each carry a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, or twice the gross loss or gain caused by the offense.

Simpson appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Leda Dunn Wettre in Newark federal court. He is charged by indictment with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and two counts of wire fraud.

U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito made the announcement.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of the Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Christina Scaringi, with the investigation leading to the indictment.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Kogan of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Cybercrimes Unit in Newark.

The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

John F. Iacono, a/k/a Vito Yodice, 46 and Shpresa Gjekovic, a/k/a Hope Gjekovic a/k/a Hope Iacono a/k/a Hope Yodice a/k/a Shpresa Hadzovic, 32, have been charged with defrauding banks throughout New York State and laundering those criminal proceeds to further their scheme.

A joint investigation by the Attorney General’s Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau and the New York State Police revealed that Iacono and Gjekovic allegedly utilized shell companies, provided fake bank statements, W2s, paystubs, and tax returns, and forged cashier checks in order to solicit over $1.3 million in loans from multiple banks across the upstate region.

According to the indictment and statements made by the prosecutor at arraignment, between April 2016 and March 2017, Iacono and Gjekovic allegedly applied for mortgages, a construction loan, personal lines of credit, personal loans, a commercial loan, a debt consolidation loan, and a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) by grossly overstating their income, assets, and source of funds – all supported by fraudulent documentation. The couple also allegedly created entities, including but not limited to JF Iacono, LLC and Iacono, LLC, and purported to have worked for them for years. In reality, these companies were created just days prior to their submission of applications for hundreds of thousands of dollars in bank funds. In total, the couple stole over $460,000 from three financial institutions, and attempted to steal over $860,000 in additional proceeds from five financial institutions.

The investigation further revealed that Iacono and Gjekovic allegedly supplied over $125,000 in counterfeit cashiers checks to financial institutions, law firms, title companies, and the sellers of a Schoharie County, New York property in order to secure financing and establish residence in the area. Iacono and Gjekovic allegedly intended to turn the Schoharie County property into a swingers club, but after obtaining the property, instead rented it out as a hunting cabin and purported to raise money for children in need. The couple allegedly utilized online postings, including on Facebook and Airbnb, to advertise the rental property.

In addition, Iacono and Gjekovic allegedly concealed from financial institutions outstanding judgments against them totaling in excess of $1.4 million. Moreover, the couple allegedly laundered fraudulently obtained loan proceeds to fund deposits and cash to close on the real estate transactions, utilizing at least five financial institutions during the course of the year-long scheme.

The defendants also allegedly created a personal financial statement showing net worth in excess of $1.1 million, with cash on hand of $400,000, while in reality their account balances were in the negative. The defendants allegedly supplied false bank statements showing the purported assets to support this claim. The balances on these statements were allegedly grossly inflated, as the couple never had more than a few thousand dollars in the accounts – the vast majority of which was from other loans.

Both defendants were arrested on a 19-count indictment, including charges of Residential Mortgage Fraud in the Second Degree, Grand Larceny in the Second and Third Degrees, and Money Laundering in the Third Degree.

Iacono and Gjekovic are each charged in the Attorney General’s indictment with the following 19 felonies: Residential Mortgage Fraud in the Second Degree, a class C felony (one count); Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony (two counts); Money Laundering in the Third Degree, a class D felony (two counts); Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony (one count); Attempted Residential Mortgage Fraud in the Second Degree, a class D felony (one count); Attempted Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class D felony (three counts); Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument, a class D felony (four counts); Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree, a class E felony (four counts); and Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, a class E felony (one count).

Iacono was arraigned on December 20, 2018 before Schoharie County Court Judge George R. Bartlett, III. Bail was set in the amount of $175,000 cash or $350,000 bond. Gjekovic was arraigned on December 24, 2018 before Hon. Bartlett and bail was set in the amount of $75,000 cash or $150,000 bond. The defendants are scheduled to appear back in court January 16, 2019.

If convicted of all counts, Iacono and Gjekovic could each face up to 10 to 20 years in state prison.

Attorney General Barbara D. Underwood and State Police Superintendent George P. Beach II made the announcement.

As we allege, these defendants grossly inflated their assets and forged a number of documents in order to defraud multiple New York banks and attempt to steal over a million dollars,” said Attorney General UnderwoodWe have no tolerance for those who try to defraud New Yorkers in order to line their own pockets.”

Superintendent George P. Beach II said, “This couple concocted a series of devious schemes to knowingly defraud financial institutions out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. I commend the Attorney General’s Office, our State Police Financial Crimes Unit and other law enforcement partners for their hard work in exposing this fraud. This indictment should serve as a reminder that those who seek to carry out such deliberate scams will be held accountable for their crimes and brought to justice.”

The charges are merely allegations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Attorney General Underwood thanks the New York State Police Financial Crimes Unit, as well as Schoharie County District Attorney Susan J. Mallery, for their valuable assistance on this investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Philip V. Apruzzese of the Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau, with the assistance of Legal Support Analysts Kira M. Russom, Caitlin Carmody, and Supervising Analyst Paul Strocko. The OAG investigation was conducted by Investigator Mark J. Terra, under the supervision of Supervising Investigator Mark Spencer and Deputy Bureau Chief Antoine Karam. The Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau is led by Bureau Chief Stephanie Swenton and Deputy Bureau Chief Joseph D’Arrigo. The Criminal Division is led by Chief Deputy Attorney General Alvin Bragg.

 

Stephen Pirt, 37, Mountain House, California, was sentenced to 2 years and 1 month in prison for his participation in a large-scale mortgage fraud scheme. According to evidence presented at the trial for co-defendant Erik Hermann Green, 33, Roseville, California, Pirt and Green defrauded the New Century Mortgage Company by submitting false documentation about borrowers’ employment, income and assets, including fraudulent loan applications and other altered bank documents. On September 19, 2013, Stephen Pirt pleaded guilty to wire fraud.

United States District Judge Troy L. Nunley told Pirt, “you were an organizer and leader of the scheme, and you need to be punished for that.”   The judge also explained the need for a proper deterrent effect.

Green is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Nunley on November 19, 2015. Green faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

The case is the product of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation and the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Michael D. Anderson and Special Assistant United States Attorney Josh F. Sigal are prosecuting the case.

Erik Hermann Green, 33, Roseville, California was found guilty by a federal jury after a six- day trial of five counts of wire fraud in a mortgage fraud scheme involving fraudulent loan applications.

According to evidence presented at trial, Green was part of a large-scale mortgage fraud scheme to defraud the New Century Mortgage Company by submitting false documentation about employment, income and assets, including fraudulent loan applications and other altered bank documents. Around November of 2006, when Green submitted his fraudulent loan applications to obtain a loan for $820,000, he was a licensed real estate sales person and managed approximately 15 loan officers. As part of the scheme, Green received a check for $100,000 that was funneled through a shell company at the close of escrow. Green used the funds for personal expenses. Continue Reading…

Edward Dacy, 77, most recently of West Melbourne, Florida, was sentenced to six years in prison on charges stemming from a multi-million dollar mortgage fraud investment scheme involving 45 properties and $16 million in mortgage loans used for the purchase of residential real estate in the District of Columbia and Maryland.

Dacy was found guilty on March 25, 2015, following a trial in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, of 10 counts of conspiracy, bank fraud, and mail fraud.  His conviction completes a three-year investigation relating to this mortgage fraud scheme. A total of nine individuals have admitted their guilt through guilty pleas or were found guilty after trial. Upon completion of his prison term, Dacy will be placed on three years of supervised release. In addition, Judge Walton ordered that he pay $2,730,345 in restitution and an identical amount as a forfeiture money judgment. Continue Reading…