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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, December 5, 2016

Citrus Heights Woman Convicted of Mortgage Fraud

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — After a four–day trial, a federal jury found Dianna F. Woods, 59, of Citrus Heights, guilty today of four counts of making false statements on loan applications, United States Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to evidence presented at trial, Woods was a licensed real estate salesperson who worked at a company called VLD Realty, doing business as Trade House USA, in the Sacramento area. VLD built and sold houses in residential developments in Sacramento, Carmichael, and Copperopolis. As the housing market began to weaken from 2006 through 2008, VLD sought to sell the houses by offering incentives to buyers. VLD offered to pay the down payment or offered to give the buyers money after the sale, neither of which was disclosed to the lenders. For her part, Woods purchased two houses based on the undisclosed kickbacks. Further, for the purpose of obtaining loans to purchase the properties, Woods signed and submitted loan applications and other documents that contained false statements as to Woods’s income, employment, assets, the purpose of the property, the sales price, and whether the down payment was borrowed. Woods also assisted another buyer in making false statements to the lenders to get loans for the purchase of two properties in the housing developments and falsely verified his employment.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Shelley Weger and Todd Pickles are prosecuting the case.

To date, six other defendants have been found guilty or have pleaded guilty in three related cases.

Woods is scheduled to be sentenced by United States District Judge William B. Shubb on February 27, 2017. Woods faces a maximum statutory penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine on each count. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Topic(s): 
Mortgage Fraud
Updated December 5, 2016