Juries around the country resolved to start the New Year with an effort to clean up allegations of mortgage fraud, with several business owners, Realtors, attorneys, and others accused of complicity and direct involvement in millions of dollars of fraud.[IMAGE]
A few news outlets contributed to _MReport's_ collection of stories, including the ""_Denver Business Journal_"":http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2012/01/03/indictment-in-colorado-mortgage-fraud.html and ""_Panama City News Herald_"":http://www.newsherald.com/news/mortgage-99447-mugs-available.html.
First up, federal prosecutors went after five individuals in connection with a purported $9-million mortgage fraud plot in Panama City Beach. Avinie Maurice Bates, Jill Newman[COLUMN_BREAK]
Zuravel, Alan Jay Nathan, Meredith Lelann King, Joann Walter, and others saw themselves charged with counts of wire fraud, according to the _News Herald_.
The newspaper reported prosecutors alleging that Bates enlisted assistance from the others and acted on behalf of his business to line up straw buyers, purchase properties, and overinflate the costs of these properties in mortgage loan applications.
All told, the _News Herald_ reports, each defendant may see as much as 20 years in their prison sentences, plus three years of supervised release and $1 million in fines, among other penalties.
Meanwhile, in Greenwood Village, Colorado, the _Business Journal_ reported that a statewide grand jury passed 18 fraud-related counts onto one Jill Evans, owner of Paramount Mortgage of Colorado Ltd.
The indictments allege that Evans bilked about half a million dollars out of her victims by masking commercial and residential mortgage loans with numerous fees, according to the newspaper. Affected properties include those in several towns and cities across California.
If convicted on charges, the business owner could see herself slapped with numerous felonies, jailtime for up to 12 years, and restitution in the amount of $750,000 in fines.