What is mortgage fraud?
Mortgage fraud is a very, very serious crime. In south Florida, we’re known as the leader in mortgage fraud, unfortunately. Mortgage fraud is almost always prosecuted in the federal courts in the United States District Courts. In addition to federal prosecutors, known as Assistant United States Attorneys, very often mortgage frauds are prosecuted in the local districts around the country, but by prosecutors out of the Department of Justice in Washington D.C. That’s how serious this is.
Mortgage fraud is when mortgages are applied for using false information, straw buyers, and mortgage companies, banks loan money. Once the money is taken, it’s siphoned off. That’s the profit from the illegal activity and the banks or the mortgage companies usually receive a payment or two, or three, and then there’s a default.
Sometimes it takes years after the fraud before people are prosecuted, but I can assure you the federal government is all over mortgage fraud and everyone involved is typically charged from secretaries to the people on the inside that give a wink and a nod to false applications, to straw buyers, buyers who are, for example, indicate they’re making $150,000 a year when the reality is they’re making $20,000 a year or they’re unemployed.
The fraud is rampant and if you’ve been involved, you think you may have been involved, you think that you might have been used as part of a mortgage fraud scheme or conspiracy, it’s essential that you be properly represented because you don’t want to be charged with mortgage fraud, and if you have been involved, you want to be a witness not a defendant.