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P R E S S   R E L E A S E

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Nov. 13, 2013


Former Loan Processor Indicted with Husband and Brother in Conspiracy to Defraud California Bank

HOUSTON—An 11-count sealed indictment charging conspiracy and bank fraud has been unsealed following the arrests of area residents Rita "Jessica" Martinez, her husband Gilbert Martinez, and her brother Felix Martinez, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson.

The three were arrested this morning without incident at their residences. They made their initial appearances before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mary Malloy today, at which time they were permitted release upon posting bond. They are set for arraignment on Monday, November 18, at 9:45 a.m.

Rita "Jessica" Martinez, 31, Gilbert Martinez, 35, both of Houston, and Felix Martinez, 37, of New Caney, are charged for their alleged involvement in a scheme to defraud Farmers and Merchants Bank of Long Beach, California, of bank loans for themselves and others.

According to allegations in the indictment, Jessica Martinez worked as a loan processor at a Houston area-business known variously as Globan Mortgage Company, Casa Milagro, and First Milagro. She allegedly submitted falsified loan applications for Gilbert and Felix Martinez and others to Farmers and Merchants Bank. The indictment alleges the defendants completed loan applications containing falsified income information and provided false information about borrowers' employment, income, and assets.

The indictment also provides notice of the government's intent to forfeit their interest in the loan proceeds they allegedly obtained as a result of the bank fraud scheme, including a house in New Caney that was allegedly purchased with loan proceeds from the purported fraud.

The maximum penalty, upon conviction, for conspiracy and bank fraud is 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

This case is being investigated by the FBI, United States Postal Inspection Service, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Assistant United States Attorney Belinda Beek is prosecuting.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.


Source: United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Texas


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