FORMER MORTGAGE BROKER PLEADS GUILTY TO MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR FRAUD
BOSTON, Mass...A Norwood woman was convicted today in federal court of wire fraud and money laundering in connection with a scheme that defrauded six mortgage lenders.
ELIZABETH REED, 39, of pleaded guilty before Senior U.S. District Judge Joseph L. Tauro to 40 counts of wire fraud and 15 counts of money laundering.
At today’s plea hearing, the prosecutor told the Court that had the case proceeded to trial the Government’s evidence would have proven that in 2006 and 2007, as the owner and operator of Mass Lending, LLC, a loan origination business, REED obtained ownership of a 24-unit building in Dorchester for conversion to condominiums. The evidence would show that REED and others recruited “straw buyers” to buy the condominiums as “investments” by promising the buyers that they would not have to invest any money or pay any closing costs or other expenses relating to the units, but would share in the proceeds when units were resold. REED and others used fraudulent mortgage loan applications and closing documents to misrepresent that borrowers had brought funds to the closings and had otherwise invested in the properties. In addition, the documents show that loan applications submitted by Mass Lending contained false representations regarding borrowers’ employment, income and assets. The prosecutor informed the court that the lenders were defrauded of $4.9 million dollars in loan proceeds.
Judge Tauro scheduled sentencing for December 13, 2011. REED faces up to 20 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine on each of the wire fraud counts; each of the money laundering counts carry up to 10 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation - Boston Field Division; and William P. Offord, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation in Boston made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Victor A. Wild and Ryan M. DiSantis of Ortiz’s Economic Crimes Unit.