Businessmen Indicted in East Texas Mortgage Fraud
SHERMAN, Texas – U.S. Attorney John M. Bales announced today that three businessmen have been indicted and charged with federal violations in the Eastern District of Texas.
Daniel C. Bomar, 36, James B. Wright, 55, both of Ocean Springs, MS, and Brett T. Immel, 35, of Chicago, were indicted by a federal grand jury on Apr. 14, 2016, and charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
According to the indictment, from 2010 to 2012, the defendants are alleged to have conspired to defraud and obtain money from Prime Lending, a mortgage lending company in Dallas, and from Federal Savings Bank, a mortgage lending company in Overland Park, Kansas. Both companies are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Wright was a title attorney who handled real estate closing transactions, and Bomar worked for his as an escrow officer. Immel was a partner in a business called Hanover Companies, which located investors to purchase homes from builders. Immel, on behalf of Hanover Companies, formed agreements and executed contracts with home builders to locate buyers for properties in exchange for a fee, known as a receivable fee. Immel solicited buyers to purchase homes from the builders and then directed those buyers to obtain mortgage loans from Prime Lending or Federal Savings Bank.
Immel specifically directed the buyers to Wright and Bomar to close the loans, and Immel provided Wright and Bomar with sales contracts executed by the sellers and buyers and the receivable fee contracts executed by the seller and Hanover. The receivables fee contracts directed the sellers to pay Hanover for providing buyers for the properties. However, Wright, Bomar, and Immel prevented Prime Lending or Federal Savings Bank from receiving any documentation that disclosed Hanover’s receivable fees from the sellers.
For each loan closing, Bomar and Wright created a HUD-1 Settlement Statement for the seller which detailed the receivable fee the seller was making to Hanover. However, Immel directed Bomar and Wright to create a separate HUD-1 Settlement Statement which omitted the receivable fee from the seller’s proceeds to Hanover, and instead showed the seller making more profit on the property than the seller actually received. Bomar and Wright provided this false HUD-1 Settlement Statement to Prime Lending and Federal Savings Bank in order to receive inflated loan proceeds based on the falsely increased purchase price, and the amount of loans funds the buyer needed to pay for the purchase of the home. After each loan was funded, Bomar and Wright paid a kickback to Immel through Hanover Companies.
All mortgage loans named in the indictment were purchased and secured by the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae).
This case is currently set for trial on June 3, 2016 before U.S. District Judge Amos L. Mazzant, III. If convicted of the charges, each defendant faces up to 30 years in federal prison for the bank fraud count and up to 10 years for the money laundering count.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Housing Finance Agency – Office of Inspector General and the Internal Revenue Service and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Camelia Lopez.
A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.