A New Jersey mortgage loan originator has been sentenced to hard time because of his role in a scheme involving $6 million in fraudulent residential loans.
Joseph DiValli had been in real estate finance since at least 1993, when he worked as a senior loan officer for First United Mortgage Co., according to his LinkedIn profile.
Among the many employers listed by DiValli during that period were Countrywide Home Loans, Gateway Funding and Residential Home Funding Corp.
The profile indicates that he left ark Mortgage inc. in January 2011 and started at Renaissance Lenders in October 2012.
It is during that gap that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey alleges that DiValli was a loan officer for a North Jersey mortgage lender and was conspiring with others to obtain fraudulent home loans.
According to the government, DiValli recruited straw buyers to purchase North Jersey properties, completed fraudulent loan applications and created bogus supporting documents.
DiValli had a bank contact who would feed him fraudulent verifications of deposit.
“DiValli and other conspirators also submitted false appraisal reports, backdated deeds and used unlicensed title agents to close transactions and disburse the mortgage proceeds,” a Department of Justice news release Tuesday said.
In all, DiValli and his accomplices allegedly obtained more than $6 million in loans through fraud. In addition to landing in default, the bad loans have exposed the Federal Housing Administration to $2 million in potential losses.
Another scheme DiValli is accused of was lying to his own home lender about his income so he’d be approved for a loan modification.
He also allegedly avoided $79,000 in taxes on $450,000 in income by failing to file a 2012 tax return.
DiValli was among nine defendants arrested in January 2013 for what was then billed as a $10 million scheme.
He was indicted in December 2014, and he pled guilty in May 2015.
U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton today sentenced DiValli to 18 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $2.3 million in restitution.