Jury Convicts Former Perdido Key Real Estate Agent In Mortgage Fraud Scheme
PENSACOLA, FLORIDA – Todd F. Brittion-Harr, 34, of Perdido Key, was convicted by a federal jury late yesterday afternoon on charges stemming from allegations of fraud during his involvement in the acquisition of multiple condominium units in Perdido Key. The verdict was announced by Pamela C. Marsh, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.
The federal indictment charged that Britton-Harr and codefendant Karyn Britton executed a scheme to make false statements on loan applications regarding their purchase of multiple condominium units in the Purple Parrot Village of Perdido Key, Florida. The evidence at trial showed that, in order to illegally obtain funds by securing new mortgages, the defendants failed to disclose known liabilities and made false statements regarding the purpose of each acquisition. The money from the bank loans was funneled back to Britton-Harr as part of the scheme. The condominium units have all since gone into foreclosure, totaling in excess of $1,000,000 in losses. During trial, the jury received evidence of Britton-Harr’s numerous real estate dealings in the Purple Parrot Village. These dealings included in excess of a dozen transactions over nine months, in which Britton-Harr collected approximately $370,000.00. The jury also reviewed many documents, signed by Britton-Harr, which contained numerous false statements impacting the bank’s decision to provide a mortgage loan.
Britton-Harr is scheduled to be sentenced on March 27, 2012, by Senior U.S. District Judge Lacey A. Collier. He faces up to 30 years in prison, as well as fines and restitution. Britton-Harr was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshals, and he continues to be detained on federal drug trafficking charges out of the Southern District of Texas, where he is under indictment for possessing with intent to distribute more than 1,000 pounds of marijuana. Karyn Britton pled guilty on November 15, 2011, and testified for the government at trial. She will be sentenced on January 24, 2012, and faces the same potential penalties.
U.S. Attorney Marsh noted, “The successful prosecution of these two defendants on mortgage fraud offenses demonstrates the commitment of the Department of Justice in combating mortgage fraud in the Northern District of Florida. We must protect the integrity of the real estate market and banking institutions in our communities, which are major contributors to the health of our economy in Florida. I commend the investigative activities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Florida Office of Financial Regulation and the prosecutor’s work on this case. Together, they did an excellent job in unraveling some very complicated real estate financial transactions in this case.” The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David L. Goldberg.