Citrus Heights Woman Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Role in Mortgage Fraud Scheme
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Dianna Woods, 60, of Citrus Heights, was sentenced today by Senior U.S. District Judge William B. Shubb to three years in prison for four counts of making false statements on loan applications, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
According to evidence presented at her four-day trial in December 2016, 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 money to buyers in the form of paying the down payment or giving the buyers money after the transaction, 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 mortgage loans to purchase the properties, Woods also 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. The banks suffered nearly $2 million in losses with respect to fraudulent transactions in which Woods was involved.
This case was the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Shelley Weger and Todd Pickles prosecuted the case.