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P R E S S   R E L E A S E


April 3, 2013

Mortgage Broker Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Financial Institution

TAMPA—United States Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announces that Gloria Arias (44, Weston) pleaded guilty today to making material misrepresentations to a financial institution. Arias faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison for her involvement in this mortgage fraud offense.

According to the plea agreement, Arias worked as a mortgage broker for Synergy Lending Group. The owner of Synergy Lending also owned and operated a real estate business ("Realty Alliance LLC") and a title agency ("Title Executives of Broward Inc."). In the summer of 2006, Realty Alliance was hired to market condominium units at The Arbors at Carrollwood ("The Arbors"). The Arbors is a 390-unit condominium complex located at 3939 Ehrlich Road in Hillsborough County. Synergy Lending was responsible for assisting prospective borrowers in obtaining financing from various mortgage lenders to purchase condo units at The Arbors. Arias used her role as a mortgage broker to ensure that borrowers were qualified for mortgage loans by including false information in their Uniform Residential Loan Applications. She falsely inflated gross monthly incomes, included bogus employment information, padded bank account balances, and added false primary residence designations.

Through Arias' fraudulent activities, the following mortgage loans were obtained in connection with the purchase and sale of condo units at The Arbors:

Buyer Development Lender Loan Amount Sale After Foreclosure or Market Value Loss Amount
W.Q.K. The Arbors Countrywide Bank $155,358 $27,425 $127,933
R.G. The Arbors Countrywide Bank $146,448 $31,300 $115,148
O.C. The Arbors Countrywide Bank $218,426 $45,254 $173,172
  Total: $416,253

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Simon Gaugush.

Source: United States Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Florida

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