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July 20, 2012

Jury Convicts Former Bank Examiner Of Mortgage Fraud

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - David M. Ketchmark, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced a former bank examiner for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) was convicted by a trial jury today of participating in a conspiracy to commit aggravated identity theft and wire fraud as a part of a mortgage fraud scheme involving the sale of a house in Lee's Summit, Mo., owned by he and his ex-wife.

Rodney Foster, 47, of Lee's Summit, Mo., was found guilty of the charge contained in a Dec. 7, 2010, federal indictment.

Evidence introduced during the trial indicated that Foster participated in a conspiracy to commit aggravated identity theft and wire fraud from Nov. 28 to Dec. 9, 2005, related to the sale of the Lee=s Summit residence.

Foster and his co-conspirators obtained names, birth dates and Social Security numbers of others, without their knowledge or permission. They used this stolen identity information to apply for mortgage loans to purchase real estate. Conspirators used the stolen identities to disguise the fact that they did not have sufficient credit to purchase the properties using their own identities. Conspirators deposited the proceeds of the mortgage loans in fraudulent bank accounts of non-existent businesses in order to take cash out of each transaction.

Foster acted as a mortgage broker for the sale of the residential property in Lee=s Summit, which belonged to he and his wife (they have subsequently divorced). Foster agreed that the property could be sold for $280,000 to a straw buyer through the mortgage fraud scheme, with the proceeds split among Foster and the other conspirators. Foster knew the appraisal for the residence had been fraudulently inflated in order for conspirators to receive cash out of the purchase based on artificial equity. A portion of the proceeds approximately $56,000 was wired to a fraudulent bank account in the name of an identity theft victim.

Several of Foster's co-conspirators, who were not charged in this indictment, have been convicted in separate cases related to the Lee's Summit residence and other similar schemes.

Following the presentation of evidence, the jury in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo., deliberated for approximately an hour before returning the guilty verdict to U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes, ending a trial that began Wednesday, July 18, 2012.

Under federal statutes, Foster is subject to a sentence of up to five years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000 and an order of restitution. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John E. Cowles. It was investigated by Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Secret Service and IRS-Criminal Investigation.

Source: United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Missouri

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