Metro Denver Realtor Sentenced for Mortgage Fraud Scheme

DENVER (LAWFUEL) – LaDonna Mullins, 74, of Denver, Colorado, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Marcia S. Krieger today to serve 3 years probation, during which the first 15 months are to be spent in home detention for wire fraud, Troy A. Eid, United States Attorney for the District of Colorado, Christopher M. Sigerson, IRS Special Agent in Charge of IRS Criminal Investigation and Special Agent in Charge of the Office of Inspector General for Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Phyllis Robinson, announced. Mullins was also ordered to forfeit $44,292 in a money judgment as well as pay restitution totaling $66,459.

LaDonna Mullins was found guilty by a jury on July 25, 2008, of four counts of wire fraud, for her part in implementing a complex mortgage fraud scheme. The verdict was handed down following a fourteen day jury trial before U.S. District Court Judge Marcia S. Krieger. The jury deliberated for a day and a half before reaching their verdict.

According evidence presented during the trial, LaDonna Mullins worked as a real estate agent doing business through “LaDonna’s Realty and Management,” which was located in Denver, Colorado.

Starting in 1999 through in 2001, the defendant, aided and abetted by others, devised a scheme to defraud and to obtain money and property by means of fraudulent representations and promises from mortgage companies that funded federally insured loans. As part of the scheme, Mullins and others working with her would locate buyers who desired to purchase a residence but were unable to qualify for a mortgage using the buyers’ accurate credit history, income and employment, and/or other financial information.

The defendant and others working with her would assist buyers who could not qualify for an FHA-insured mortgage legitimately by one or more of the following means: (i) obtaining a false Social Security number (“SSN”) for the buyer, which would conceal the buyer’s unfavorable credit history; (ii) creating false W-2s, tax returns or other income documents, which would inflate or wholly create income that would purportedly be available for the buyer to make mortgage payments; (iii) creating false verifications of rent (“VOR”) or employment (“VOE”) to support false information about the buyer; (iv) creating false alternate credit letters, which would create an appearance that the buyer had a history of paying debts timely; and (v) creating fake “gift letters,” which falsely stated that the buyer had an appropriate source of funds for the down payment, and/or other false financial information.

“Mortgage fraud is ravaging our economy and will be dealt with accordingly,” said United States Attorney Troy Eid.

“Her fraudulent actions resulted in the foreclosures of Colorado homes which have added to the destabilization of the real estate market,” said Christopher M. Sigerson, Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Denver Field Office.

This case was investigated by the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD OIG), and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division (IRS CID).

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Patricia Davies and Matt Kirsch.

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