Owner of Mortgage Brokerage Sentenced for Straw Buyer Scam

Allison Tussey —  June 17, 2013 — Leave a comment

Amy Nicole Schloemann, aka Amy Kinney, 36, Vallejo, California, was sentenced this week to 36 months in prison and ordered to pay $5,805,902 in restitution for her role in a real-estate related wire fraud conspiracy.

Schloemann pleaded guilty on August 22, 2012, to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 United States Code Section 1349. According to court documents, Schloemann was the president of Hiddenbrooke Mortgage Company, a real estate and mortgage brokerage company in operation from 2005 through 2007 in Vallejo, California. Between 2006 and July 2007, Schloemann conspired with others to purchase more than 18 properties in the Northern and Eastern Districts of California in the names of fictitious identities and using straw buyers. As part of the conspiracy Schloemann supervised others who processed loan packages with materially false information, including contracts that reflected inflated sales prices above the original sales prices.

The purchase loans, which were 100% financed, exceeded the sales prices received by the sellers. The excess amounts from the loan proceeds, or “profits” from the transactions, were dispersed through escrow to entities controlled in part by Schloemann. All but a few of the properties involved in the conspiracy were foreclosed due to the failure to make mortgage payments. The lenders sustained significant losses as a result of the fraud.

Schloemann was indicted by a federal grand jury on October 9, 2009. She was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering.

The sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Phyllis J. Hamilton, following the defendant’s guilty plea. Judge Hamilton also sentenced the defendant to a 3-year period of supervised release. Schloemann, who has been out of custody on bond since November 2009, will begin serving her sentence on July 29, 2013.

United States Attorney Melinda Haag announced the sentence.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christina Marie McCall is the attorney who prosecuted the case with the assistance of Noble Hughes and Kathleen Turner. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the IRS-Criminal Investigation with the assistance of the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

 

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