United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner
Eastern District of California
Fairfield Man Pleads Guilty To Schemes Resulting In More Than $2 Million In Losses
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
Thursday, June 7, 2012
Docket #: 2:11-cr-249-MCE
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Alonzo Jackson Brown III, 44, of Fairfield, pleaded guilty today to two different schemes to defraud that collectively resulted in losses of more than $2 million, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
According to court documents, in the first scheme, Brown posed as an investment advisor and induced a Canadian citizen to give him $1 million (USD) by promising to invest the money in high yield “trades” that would return $1 million per week for eight consecutive weeks. In fact, such trades do not exist and Brown simply used the money for personal expenses, unauthorized investments in his own name, and lulling payments back to the victim. A few months after receiving the money, Brown ceased all communication with the victim, and pocketed the remaining $635,000.
In the second scheme, Brown, a licensed real estate agent, defrauded financial institutions by purchasing residential property and then “selling” those properties to unwitting straw buyers at greatly inflated prices. In fact, Brown supplied all the money for the down payment on the properties he was selling and also paid the first several mortgage payments before ultimately defaulting on the loans. The lenders were induced to give the loans in the first place because Brown had prepared loan applications and submitted false documentation that greatly inflated the income and assets of the purported buyer. In this way, Brown was able to strip the inflated equity out of the property and leave the lenders with huge losses. Losses resulting from the five properties identified in the plea agreement amounted to more than $1.5 million.
This case is the product of an investigation by the FBI and the United States Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States Attorney R. Steven Lapham is prosecuting the case.
Brown is scheduled to be sentenced on September 27, 2012 by U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England Jr. He is facing up to 20 years in federal prison for each of schemes. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory sentencing factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.