â€œMortgage fraud is occurring throughout the United States, including here in Mississippi. We are seeking to bring to justice those people who are enriching themselves by committing crimes at the expense of borrowers and lenders.â€
-U. S. Attorney Dunn Lampton
A federal grand jury returned a 47-count indictment against Michael Lance Persac, Jason Ellis, and Carroll F. Ellis, Jr., and a 20-count indictment against Toby Wayne Goss. All four were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering in connection with a mortgage loan fraud scheme.
According to the 47-count indictment, Persac worked as a mortgage broker for Mortgage Stop, Inc. Jason Ellis worked for Mortgage Stop and under the business name of Professional Mortgage Consultants Corporation. Carroll F. Ellis, Jr. was in the business of buying and selling houses for a profit. During the time period covered by the indictment, Persac, Jason Ellis and Carroll F. Ellis, Jr. obtained fraudulent loans for approximately 65 borrowers totaling over $3 million. The indictment alleges that from June of 1999 through August of 2005, Persac, Jason Ellis and Carroll F. Ellis, Jr. conspired to prepare false and fictitious documents to insure that lenders would make mortgage loans to prospective borrowers. Unless the mortgage loans were successful, Persac and Jason Ellis could not receive a fee for their brokerage services.
The false documents prepared by Persac, Jason Ellis and Carroll F. Ellis, Jr. included such things as false verification of deposit documents, false verification of rent documents, and false documents verifying a borrowerâ€™s income. False entries were also included with loan application packets which showed that the borrower paid cash at the closing of the loan when no such funds were paid by the borrower.
Persac and Jason Ellis also conspired to create fictitious creditors to which borrowers allegedly were indebted, and received checks at the loan closings for these fictitious creditors, the proceeds of which would be converted to their own use.
In a separate, but related, 20-count indictment, Toby Wayne Goss is also charged with conspiring with others to match up prospective borrowers with mortgage lenders by preparing the loan applications and supporting documents for each borrower and submitting the completed loan application package to a lender, all for a fee. Goss worked as a mortgage broker doing business as Consolidated Mortgage Corporation and/or Mississippi Mortgage. The indictment alleges that Goss and others created false and fictitious documents to ensure that the mortgage loans would be granted to borrowers, which allowed Goss to convert some of the proceeds for his own use and benefit. According to the indictment, Goss and others successfully obtained loans for approximately 35 borrowers totaling over $2 million.
This mortgage fraud investigation has been ongoing for over two years and is a joint investigation by the Internal Revenue Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The investigation is continuing and other charges are expected in the near future.