News and Press Releases

Pittsburgh Man Sentenced To Prison For Mortgage Fraud Scheme, Manufacturing Counterfeit Bills

July 26, 2010

PITTSBURGH, Pa. ‑ Acting United States Attorney Robert S. Cessar announced today, July 26, 2010, that John Orth, a resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court in Pittsburgh 15 months of incarceration and three years of supervised release on his conviction of Manufacturing Counterfeit United States Currency and Wire Fraud Conspiracy.

United States District Judge Nora Barry Fischer imposed the sentence on Orth, age 38.  Orth is currently incarcerated at the Pittsburgh State Correctional Institute on unrelated charges.

According to information presented to the court by Assistant United States Attorney Brendan T. Conway, Orth manufactured counterfeit $100 bills that were passed at various retail establishments in the Pittsburgh area in May 2007.

Orth also participated in a mortgage fraud scheme in which he sold approximately 18 properties at highly‑elevated prices.

Members of the conspiracy provided the lenders with fraudulent documents related to borrowers' income and assets, and Orth participated in fraudulent real estate closings in which lenders were falsely led to believe that the borrowers had made significant down payments associated with the purchases of properties when, in fact, that had not made any down payments.

Mr. Cessar commended the United States Secret Service for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Orth with regard to the manufacturing of counterfeit currency charge.  Mr. Cessar commended the Mortgage Fraud Task Force for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Orth with regard to the mortgage fraud charge.  The Mortgage Fraud Task Force is comprised of investigators from federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and others involved in the mortgage industry. Federal law enforcement agencies participating in the Mortgage Task Force include the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation; the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General; the United States Postal Inspection Service; and the United States Secret Service.  Other Mortgage Fraud Task Force members include the Allegheny County Sheriff's Office; the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office, Bureau of Consumer Protection; the Pennsylvania Department of Banking; the Pennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Enforcement and Investigation; and the United States Trustee's Office.

Mortgage industry members with knowledge of fraudulent activity are encouraged to call the Mortgage Fraud Task Force at (412) 894‑7550.  Consumers are encouraged to report suspected mortgage fraud by calling the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Consumer Protection Hotline at (800) 441‑2555.

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