Archives For Florida

Richard Michael Colbert, Attorney, Florida, was indicted and charged with conspiracy to commit bank or mail fraud, loan application fraud, theft or embezzlement by a bank officer and money laundering.

The indictment alleges a short sale scheme whereby the owner of property negotiates with the original lender holding the mortgage to sell the property to a person whom the original lender believes is a bona-fide purchase but who is, in fact, a straw buyer.  The straw buyer, who is typically paid for used of his personal identification information and who is assured he will have no responsibility for the property or the new mortgage, negotiates a purchase price substantially less than the amount owed the lender. On the date that the short sale closes, a second sale of the property at an inflated price occurs to a second buyer.  Continue Reading…

Ravindranauth “Ravi” Roopnarine, 55, Guyana, was indicted on charges stemming from his leadership and participation in an extensive mortgage fraud scheme, which resulted in the issuance of more than $50 million in fraudulent mortgage loans.  The co-conspirators then used the proceeds to purchase additional properties, fund pre-existing fraudulent mortgage loans, and pay kickbacks to the straw buyers.

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Julian Martin Gaspar Vazquez, 52, Mexico, was sentenced on May 22, 2015, by United States District Judge William P. Dimitrouleas, to forty-one months imprisonment, to be followed by five years of supervised release for executing a $4 million dollar bank fraud scheme.

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Mark Yaffe, 55, Tampa, Florida, has pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud admitting his role in misrepresenting the extent of company collateral to Sovereign Bank in order to borrow $35 million.

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David W. Griffin, 44, Lutz, Florida, has been charged with one count of mail fraud, nine counts of bankruptcy fraud, two counts of making a false statement under oath during a bankruptcy proceeding, and one count of aggravated identity theft for his alleged role in a foreclosure rescue scheme.

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Stephen Mayer, 51, Miami, Florida, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Susan C. Bucklew to 11 years and 3 months in federal prison for his role in a real estate flipping and equity skimming conspiracy. The Court also ordered him to pay more than $3.1 million in restitution to the affected lenders, and more than $4 million in forfeiture, which were proceeds traceable to the scheme.

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Stephen B. Deluca, 58, Deland, Florida, was sentenced by Senior United States District Judge John Antoon, II to six years and six months in federal prison for his role in a conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud wherein he defrauded several lenders using inflated assets to qualify for lines of credit.

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Pedro “Pete” Benevides, 45, Astatula, Florida, was sentenced by Senior United States District Judge Gregory J. Presnell to nine years in federal prison for his role in obtaining 20 fraudulent commercial and residential loans and lines of credit from several federally insured financial institutions totaling approximately $44,059,565.

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Six individuals were indicted for participating in a mortgage fraud conspiracy involving alleged misrepresentations to the banks including fictitious verifications of false and fraudulent employment and bank deposit information set forth on loan applications.  Continue Reading…


Rashmi Airan-Pace, South Miami, Florida, was granted a disciplinary revocation, with leave to seek readmission after five years, effective immediately, following a February 27, 2015 court order. Continue Reading…