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April 6, 2012

Department of Justice

United States Attorney William C. Killian Eastern District of Tennessee

Pair Sentenced For Role In Sevier County Mortgage Scheme

Mother and Son Conspired to Make False Statements to Banks to Obtain Mortgage Loans

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.-- Carolyn S. Ethridge, 62, of Gallatin, Tenn., and her son, Mark Allen Ethridge, 43, of Payson, Utah, were each sentenced on April 5, 2012, to serve 12 months and one day in prison by the Honorable Thomas A. Varlan, U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee. The Ethridges pleaded guilty on June 27, 2011, to conspiring to make false statements to influence the actions of mortgage lenders.

In total, their scheme involved obtaining 19 mortgage loans under false pretenses over a one year period in 2002 - 2003. Mortgage loans were obtained for amounts that exceeded the actual selling price of the properties. The Ethridges represented to the sellers that the additional moneys obtained from the mortgage loans would be used for improvements to the properties. Among the false statements were misrepresentations concerning the buyers’ intentions to occupy the properties as their primary residence and failing to disclose the existence of other mortgages. The intended loss encompassed by the scheme exceeded $1 million.

The prosecution and subsequent conviction of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew T. Morris.

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