Home Mortgage Scammers Sentenced


On July 19, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia (USAO) announced that three co-conspirators in a mortgage modification scam based in California were sentenced following a jury verdict against them.  The defendants, through a mortgage modification company, purportedly collected fees from more than 3,000 residential mortgage holders and promised consumers that the company would either secure a mortgage modification on their behalf or return their fees.  The defendants also falsely represented that they were associated with the federal government’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP).  Most of the funds were diverted to the company’s employees, including to purchase expensive vehicles, a racehorse, and to fund a reality television show the head of the company produced called “Make it Rain.TV.”  The head of the company (and reality show producer) was sentenced to twenty years, while two other employees of the company were sentenced to twelve and seven years respectively.

The litigation was a joint investigation undertaken by the USAO, the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), and the United States Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General (HUD-OIG).  Twelve individuals (all from California or Nevada) have now been convicted in relation to this scam, with prison sentences​ ranging from 60 days to 20 years.


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