You know those people who live in foreign countries and place calls into the US in an attempt to defraud people here?  Those calls your mother or grandfather receive telling them that they won $1,000,000 in the Jamaican lottery and will receive the money as soon as they wire $20,000 to cover the taxes and administrative costs?

I was very pleased to read that the U.S. extradited Damian Bryan Barrett from Jamaica and prosecuted him for his role in an international lottery scheme perpetrated against elderly victims in the United States.  The prosecution is part of the United States’ ongoing crackdown on fraudulent international lottery schemes. Continue Reading…

Florida man charged in bank fraud scheme

A Florida man has been charged in Pittsburgh with conspiring with Joseph Nocito, president of Castle Mortgage, in a multi-million dollar bank fraud scheme involving a house in Florida.

Federal prosecutors on Thursday charged Mark Sosso, 43, the owner of Sosso Homes in Sarasota, with one count of conspiracy. The charge is contained in what prosecutors call an “information,” rather than a grand jury indictment, which is typically an indication of cooperation with the government.

“This sentence sends a very strong message that scammers operating in foreign countries will be held accountable for the laws they break in the United States.  The Justice Department is committed to bringing these international fraudsters to justice.”

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Benjamin C. Mizer of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, regarding the extradition from Jamaica and prosecution of Damion Bryan Barrett

A federal grand jury returned a 15-count indictment against seven individuals, charging them with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and bank fraud, mail fraud and aiding and abetting, and making false statements to a bank in a mortgage fraud scheme.

Jyoteshna Karan, 43, Modesto, California; Praveen Singh, 36, Modesto, California; and Mahendra Prasad, 53, Fremont, California, were arrested June 26, 2015 at their homes. The remaining defendants each received a summons to appear for arraignment: Phul Singh, 79, Modesto, California; Sunita Singh, 60, Modesto, California, Nani Isaac, 69, Ceres, California; and Martin Bahrami, 42, Turlock, California. Continue Reading…

“[Mortgage Fraud] has the potential to be an epidemic, we think we can prevent a problem that could have as much impact as the S&L crisis”


Assistant FBI Director Chris Swecker to CNN reporter Terry Frieden, September 17, 2004

5 Other Plaintiffs in Chuck Liddell Fraud Trial Lose Their Cases

The same jury that believed an escrow company helped North County developer Kelly Gearhart defraud ex-fighting champ Chuck Liddell did not believe that it had helped defraud five other plaintiffs in the same trial, according to verdicts announced this week.

Adam Lacerda, 31, Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, was sentenced to 324 months in prison for his role in a $3 million conspiracy to scam customers by offering phony consulting services to owners of timeshares through the New Jersey-based Vacation Ownership Group LLC. Lacerda was convicted in September 2013 of one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, nine counts of mail fraud and three counts of wire fraud flowing a seven-week trial before U.S. District Judge Noel L. Hillman in Camden, New Jersey federal court.

According to documents filed in this case and the evidence presented at trial: Continue Reading…

Keith Vinson, 57, developer, Arden, North Carolina, was sentenced to 18 years in prison for his role in a scheme involving the failed land development deal of Seven Falls, a golf course and luxury residential community in Henderson County, North Carolina. He was also ordered to serve three years of supervised release and to pay restitution in the amount of $18,384,584.53

A federal jury convicted Vinson in October 2013 of conspiracy, bank fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering conspiracy.

Stated Jill Westmoreland Rose, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina: Continue Reading…

James Richard Currey, 55, Winter Park, Florida, was sentenced in federal court on one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud in connection with telemarketing of timeshares. Currey was sentenced to one year in prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $67,137.50 in restitution to the individual victims. Continue Reading…

“This case is another sad reminder that so-called investment gurus who make promises of big guaranteed returns should send up red flags.  If something seems too good to be true, it usually is.”

Steven M. Dettelbach, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. Commenting on the indictment of Northeast Ohio residents Thomas Abdallah, Mark M. George, and Jeffrey L. Gainer on allegations they conspired to defraud about 70 investors of approximately $17 Million Dollars.