The New Jersey Attorney General announced that a North Jersey businessman and purported mortgage broker was charged in connection with allegations he concocting a mortgage fraud scheme that netted more than $677,000 in fraudulent loans and $37,000 in unearned commissions. The charges, which include various counts of theft, result from an investigation targeting allegations of mortgage fraud.
According to the Director of the Division of Criminal Justice, the State Grand Jury indictment charged Russell Mainardi, 49, Alder Avenue, Wayne, Passaic County, New Jersey with theft by deception (2nd degree) and theft by failure to make required disposition of funds received (3rd degree). If convicted on all charges, Mainardi faces up to 15 years in state prison, a fine of up to $165,000, and financial restitution.
The State Grand Jury indictment alleges that between Oct. 1, 1997 and Feb. 18, 2000, Mainardi maintained a business relationship with Germain Financial Services by operating branch offices located at 1310 Hamburg Turnpike, Wayne, New Jersey and 560 Route 23, Pompton Plains, New Jersey. The indictment charges that Mainardi, who is not a licensed mortgage broker, falsified at least six mortgage applications submitted to two financial lending institutions – Option One and SLM Mortgage Company. The investigation determined that the mortgage applications contained false information including, false verifications of employment, phony W2 documents, and forged certified down payment checks. The value of the mortgage loans funded by Option One and SLM totaled $677,700. Additionally, the mortgage companies paid $37,741 in commissions to Germain Financial Services which were cashed by Mainardi, who retained the monies for personal use.
“The indictment alleges that the defendant stole nearly three-quarters of a million dollars in mortgage money from financial lenders who believed the applications were authentic. The Division of Criminal Justice is targeting unscrupulous individuals in the mortgage industry who endeavor to defraud the marketplace and who jeopardize the financial security of lending institutions”
- Vaughn L. McKoy, Director, Division of Criminal Justice