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P R E S S   R E L E A S E

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

May 31, 2012


Eight Charged in Connection with a $39 Million Mortgage Fraud Scheme

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Steve L. Linick, Inspector General, Federal Housing Finance Agency - Office of Inspector General, and Al Lamberti, Sheriff, Broward County Sheriff's Office, announced the unsealing of a federal Indictment against eight defendants in connection with fraudulently obtaining mortgages for the purchase of condominium units at Marina Oaks Condominiums in Fort Lauderdale.

More specifically, the indictment charges defendants Juan Carlos Sanchez, age 39 of New York, NY, Quelyory Rigal, a/k/a "Kelly," age 36, of Homestead, FL, Sandra P. Campo, age 34, of Colombia, South America, Osbelia Lazardi, age 54, of Southwest Ranches, FL, Dayanara Montero, age 37, of Miramar, FL, Edward R. Mena, age 36, of Miami, FL, Celeste Mota, age 29, of Fort Myers, FL, and David Arboleda, age 27, of Doral, FL. All but one defendant made their initial appearances in court. Defendant Sandra Campo remains at large. The indictment charges the defendants with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud (Count 1), and substantive counts of wire fraud (Counts 2-11) and mail fraud (Counts 12-16). If convicted, the defendants face a maximum possible statutory sentence of up to 20 years on each count.

According to the indictment, from January 2007 through November 2008, the defendants conspired to recruit individuals who would be willing to purchase condominium units at Marina Oaks Condominiums. These buyers were promised a "buyers' incentive," which payment was not disclosed to the lenders or reflected on any of the closing documents. The conspirators would then prepare materially false mortgage applications for the buyers on HUD Uniform Loan Application Form 1003. These forms contained false information as to material facts regarding the borrowers' credit worthiness in order to qualify the borrowers for mortgages to purchase the Marina Oaks Condominiums. The conspirators would allegedly also create false documents to support the mortgage applications. Once the loans closed, the conspirators would divert portions of the mortgage proceeds for their personal use and benefit. The indictment alleges that the conspirators obtained $39,000,000 in fraudulent mortgage loans.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the Federal Housing Finance Agency Office of the Inspector General and the Broward Sheriff's Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Lanigan.

An indictment is only an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.


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


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