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Press Release

Memphis Man Sentenced to 85 Months for Mortgage Fraud, Identity Theft

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Tennessee

Memphis, TN – A Memphis man has been sentenced to more than seven years in federal prison as a result of his conviction in two separate cases involving mortgage fraud and identity theft. Edward L. Stanton III, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee, announced the sentencing today.

According to the indictment, Marcus Jerome Payne, 46, of Memphis, and a co-conspirator fraudulently obtained two mortgage loans totaling approximately $530,000 between December 2008 and March 2009. Payne and his co-conspirator were able to apply for and obtain the mortgage loans by unlawfully using the name, social security number and other personal identifying information of another person.

Payne and his co-conspirator fraudulently obtained a mortgage loan of more than $265,000 from Fifth Third Bank. They obtained another loan of more than $264,000 from CitiBank. The loans were secured to buy two residential properties located in the city’s Central Avenue area.

In July 2015, Payne pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail, wire and bank fraud for his role in the mortgage loan fraud scheme.

Payne’s co-conspirator, Booker Smith, 32, of Memphis, pled guilty to one count of bank fraud in October 2015. He’s scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Samuel H. Mays on Friday, January 8, 2016. He faces up to 30 years and a fine of up to $1 million when sentenced. He will also be ordered to pay restitution in the total amount of $265,155.22.

Payne also pled to unrelated charges of wire fraud and identity theft which were outlined in a criminal information filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The wire fraud charge alleged that Payne fraudulently obtained two other mortgage loans for residences in Shelby County. The loans totaled approximately $661,200 between January and March 2006.

The criminal information also alleged that Payne fraudulently used the name of another individual to obtain an Arkansas Driver’s License, a mortgage loan origination agreement, and credit between June 2010 and July 2015.

On Tuesday, December 15, 2015, Payne was sentenced by Judge Mays to serve 85 months. He was also ordered to pay restitution in the total amount of $265,289.40 and forfeit $521,000.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation Division; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Carroll L. Andre III prosecuted this case on the government’s behalf.

Updated December 17, 2015