Archives For Rhode Island

Juliana Martins, 52, North Providence, Rhode Island, has been indicted for allegedly making false statements related to her incarceration and the court-ordered requirement that she pay back the stolen money when she applied for a U.S. Federal Housing Administration-backed home mortgage.

Martins in June 2019, while serving a term of federal supervised release for having conspired to use the stolen personal identity information of numerous individuals to steal nearly $400,000 from the United States Treasury, falsely represented on a home loan application, and in July 2019 on a closing document, that there were no outstanding judgements against her, when in fact she is under court order to pay restitution to the government totaling $385,533.58.

According to the indictment, when responding to requirements to truthfully disclose to the bank her credit report, assets, liabilities, and income, Martins falsely stated to the bank that “the reason I have a job gap in my employment was because I was away on a family emergency for over two years,” when in fact during that time she was incarcerated in federal prison. Additionally, it is alleged, Martins provided a false explanation for an inquiry from the Department of Justice on her credit report.

In March 2014, Martins pleaded guilty to conspiracy to embezzle United States Treasury checks, theft of government property, and aggravated identity theft, admitting that she was a leader of a criminal enterprise that possessed hundreds of people’s personal identifying information that was used to open bank accounts into which fraudulently obtained government checks were deposited. Martins was sentenced in September 2014 to serve 48 months in federal prison to be followed by three years of federal supervised release.

On Friday, a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Martins with making false statements on bank loan applications, announced Acting United States Attorney Richard B. Myrus and Christina D. Scaringi, Special Agent in Charge of the Northeast Region of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – Office of Inspector General.

The indictment requires, upon conviction, that Martin forfeit to the government her interest in her North Providence house and property.

A federal indictment is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Martins is scheduled to appear before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Patricia A Sullivan on Tuesday for a supervised release violation hearing.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra R. Hebert.

Monique N. Brady, 44, East Greenwich, Rhode Island, whose business specialized in preserving the current condition of foreclosed homes for resale has been charged for allegedly operated a scheme whereby she raised and pocketed millions of dollars from investors, often times family members, friends, and business associates, by misrepresenting to them that she needed to raise tens of thousands of dollars for various repair projects. In return for their investment, investors were promised a return of 50 percent of the profit.

According to Court documents, it is alleged that Brady misrepresented projects and solicited multiple bids for significantly more money than an individual project required. Brady performed relatively menial tasks such as grass mowing, snow removal, boiler service, etc., for as little as $20, but represented the bids to investors as full-fledged rehabilitation projects costing tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars.

It is alleged that Brady, owner and operator of MNB LLC, often convinced investors to invest substantial amounts of money claiming she had been awarded Freddie Mac rehabilitation projects, when in fact the projects were associated with real estate entities other than Freddie Mac. Brady allegedly used the Freddie Mac name to provide more credibility to her fraudulent solicitations.

A review of bank and other financial records revealed that Brady allegedly received approximately $10,076,291 in investments from 32 individuals based on numerous false and fraudulent representations. Many of these investors had close and personal relationships with Brady, including close friends, her step-brother and the former nanny for her children. The complaint charges that numerous investors suffered substantial harm as a result Brady’s fraudulent conduct, including an elderly woman who lost nearly all of her life savings and another elderly man with Alzheimer’s disease who lost his life savings to Brady.

As part of the alleged scheme, Brady often paid back some of the money she received from one investor with monies received from another. By the time the scheme ended after its discovery in the summer of 2018, 23 individuals had allegedly lost approximately $4,495,237 to Brady.

Brady appeared today before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Lincoln D. Almond on a Criminal Complaint charging her with wire fraud.

The announcement was made by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, U.S. Attorney for the District of Rhode Island Aaron L. Weisman, Special Agent in Charge of Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Kristina O’Connell, and Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Boston Division Joseph R. Bonavolonta.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lee H. Vilker and Tax Division Trial Attorney Christopher P. O’Donnell.

A Criminal Complaint is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Louis Marandola, 42, Providence, Rhode Island, a Former Real Estate Attorney, and Brian R. McCaffrey, 38, Warwick, Rhode Island, a former licensed loan originator, have been sentenced to federal prison for their participation in a scheme to obtain money they were not entitled to from financial institutions and individuals through mortgage loans, residential property sales and fees.

Marandola was sentenced to 48 months in federal prison to be followed by 3 years supervised release. On January 13, 2017, Marandola pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft.

McCaffrey was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison, to be followed by 3 years supervised release. McCaffrey pleaded guilty on January 27, 2017, to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and bank fraud.

Two co-defendants in this matter, Raffaele M. Marziale, 41, Bristol, Rhode Island, a former loan officer who pleaded guilty on February 29, 2016, to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, and aggravated identity theft; and Edwin Rodriguez, 35, Pawtucket, a real estate investor who pleaded guilty on June 1, 2016, to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, aggravated identity theft and tampering with a witness, are awaiting sentencing.

Gina Ronci Mohamed, 46, Lincoln, Rhode Island, was sentenced on April 25, 2017, to two years probation. Ms. Ronci pleaded guilty on April 22, 2016, to making a false statement to HUD. Lauren Sienko, 35, of Rehoboth, Massachusetts., was sentenced on April 3, 2017, to two years probation. Ms. Sienko pleaded guilty on January 6, 2017, to making a false statement to HUD.

According to court documents and information presented to the court, an investigation by the United States Attorney’s Office, HUD-OIG, U.S. Secret Service and Rhode Island State Police determined that between 2007 and 2014, the defendants conspired to execute a scheme which caused prospective homebuyers to obtain mortgages from financial institutions based upon materially false loan applications and fraudulent supporting documentation. As part of the conspiracy, false representations were made in order to obtain fees to which the defendants were not entitled or to make a profit selling property in which they had an ownership interest. In some instances, thousands of dollars were fraudulently obtained by misrepresenting on a HUD form the amount of funds due or to be paid to one of the parties involved in a transaction.

In numerous instances, the defendants concealed their involvement in the scheme by conducting business under the names of several different entities and individuals. At times, the defendants used stolen identities to further the fraud and to conceal their connection to the real estate transactions.

The sentences, imposed by U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., are announced by Acting United States Attorney Stephen G. Dambruch; Christina D. Scaringi, Special Agent in Charge of the Northeast Region of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General (HUD-OIG); Brian Deck, Resident Agent in Charge of the Providence Office of the U.S. Secret Service; and Colonel Ann C. Assumpico, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police.

The cases are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sandra R. Hebert and William J. Ferland.

 

 

Louis Marandola, 41, attorney, Providence, Rhode Island; Brian R. McCaffrey, 38, licensed loan originator, East Greenwich, Rhode Island; Raffaele M. Marziale, 41, former loan officer, Bristol, Rhode Island; Lauren Sienko, 33, loan processor, Rehoboth, Massachusetts; Gina M. Ronci Mohamed, 45, licensed real estate agent, Lincoln, Rhode Island; and Edwin Rodriguez, 35,  real estate investor, Pawtucket, Rhode Island, were charged in a 22-count federal grand jury indictment unsealed in U.S. District Court in Providence, Rhode Island with allegedly participating in a conspiracy to obtain money they were not entitled to from financial institutions and individuals through mortgage loans, residential property sales and fees. Continue Reading…

Franchesco Franco, 34, a former mortgage loan originator, Providence, Rhode Island, pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiracy to commit bank fraud for his participation with a local real estate attorney and others in a scheme to defraud Flagstar Bank, by filing a fraudulent mortgage loan application and supporting documentation in the name of a person known to him who had recently died, in order to secure a loan in the amount of $157,102 for the purchase of a residence at 63 Wendell Street, Providence, Rhode Island.

According to court documents, after the mortgage was issued, Franco filed fraudulent documents in the deceased person’s name in order to have his own name added to the deed for the property. Loan payments were never made to Flagstar Bank, an FHA-insured lender, by Franco or anyone else. As a result, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) paid an insurance claim to Flagstar Bank for the unpaid balance of the loan in the amount of $165,062. According to court documents, a corporation formed by the real estate attorney, an alleged co-conspirator in this matter, later purchased the note for $35,000. Continue Reading…

James D. Levitt, 66, Pawtucket, Rhode Island, a disbarred real estate attorney, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Providence to 12 months and one day in prison and fined $25,000 for his role in a $1.1 million mortgage fraud scheme.

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James D. Levitt, 66, Rhode Island, a former attorney, pled guilty in federal court in Providence, Rhode Island, to three counts of bank fraud and two counts of filing false tax returns for his role in a million-dollar mortgage fraud scheme.

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Juan Carlos Hernandez, 42, West Warwick, R.I., a former loan officer with National City Mortgage Company, pleaded guilty to his role in a “straw-borrowing” scheme that netted more than $3.5 million in fraudulently obtained mortgages on 13 properties in five Rhode Island communities.

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Christopher B. Maselli, a former North Providence real estate attorney and former Rhode Island state senator, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Providence to 27 months in federal prison. Maselli pleaded guilty in November 2010 to eight counts of bank fraud, admitting that he falsified bank and federal tax documents and lied about his income and assets in obtaining more than $1.7

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Nathan Russo, 34, Johnston, Rhode Island, pled guilty before Chief United States District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford, Connecticut, to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud stemming from his participation in a mortgage fraud conspiracy.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Russo and others engaged in a scheme to obtain millions of

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