Archives For Foreclosure Rescue

Silver Buckman, 37, Cherry Hill, New Jersey, her parents, Vincent Foxworth, 70, Turnersville, New Jersey and Cynthia Foxworth, 64, Turnersville, New Jersey, were convicted by a federal jury for a mortgage fraud scheme that stripped the equity from the homes of desperate homeowners facing foreclosure.  The three were found guilty of bank fraud, wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud. Their scheme caused losses to mortgage lenders of approximately $3.8 million.

The defendants offered to help financially-vulnerable individuals save their homes from foreclosure or obtain money from the equity in their homes but, instead, defrauded the homeowners and mortgage lenders. Buckman owned and operated Fresh Start Financial Services (“FSFS”), in Mount Laurel, New Jersey and was an employee of American Home Lending as well as a mortgage broker for American One Mortgage (“AOM”). Her father is an experienced Realtor.

Between October 2006 and November 2009, Buckman and her co-defendants allegedly targeted financially vulnerable homeowners and represented to them that they could improve their credit, save their homes from foreclosure, or provide them with money through Buckman’s lease buyback program. The homeowners were told that “investors” would be used to temporarily refinance their homes and that they could repurchase the homes in one year, or once they regained their financial footing. The defendants also allegedly induced the homeowners into signing documents related to the sale and lease of their homes by their representations that the homeowners would remain on the title to their homes, that the equity from their homes would be placed into an individual escrow account in their names, and that new mortgages would be paid from the escrow accounts to establish their timely payment histories.

In order to carry out the scheme, Buckman recruited Vincent Foxworth and Cynthia Foxworth and others to be straw borrowers. Buckman submitted false financial and employment information about the straw borrowers to mortgage lenders. Once lenders agreed to fund the mortgage loans, Buckman prevented the homeowners from receiving the settlement proceeds and did not put money into escrow accounts for the homeowners. Instead, the defendants distributed the proceeds amongst themselves. Buckman used only a fraction of the homeowners’ monies toward the payment of the mortgages obtained by the straw borrowers for the homeowners’ homes and thereby caused the loans to go into default.

U.S. District Court Judge R. Barclay Surrick scheduled a sentencing hearing for January 29, 2016.The defendants each face a potential advisory sentencing guideline range of approximately 87 to 108 months in prison plus restitution.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Postal Inspection Service and IRS Criminal Investigations. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Anita Eve.

Costa Mesa Woman Could Be Sentenced To Federal Prison For Running A Foreclosure Rescue Fraud Scheme

A 31-year-old Costa Mesa woman could be sentenced to federal prison today for running a foreclosure rescue fraud scheme that targeted homeowners with bogus promises of mortgage relief.

Najia Jalan faces between two and six years behind bars following her July guilty plea in Los Angeles to mail fraud and aggravated identity theft charges, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Christopher Nelson, 46, Henderson, Nevada, and Niket Kulkarni, 38, Los Angeles, California were indicted by the Clark County, Nevada, Grand Jury, along with Thomas J. Adams,  Robyn D. Reese, and James Sheridan Reese, in connection with a short sale rescue fraud scheme. The charges include racketeering, pattern of mortgage lending fraud, theft, theft from a person over the age of 60, and failure to place a mortgage fee of over $1,000 in escrow. The defendants operated their business, the American Equity Foundation, between July 2012 and May 2013.

According to the indictment, the defendants are accused of soliciting customers to participate in a short sale program purportedly associated with the federal government called the Neighborhood Stabilization Plan. Defendants falsely represented to their clients that their business could facilitate the short sales of customers’ homes to investors. Clients were also told that they could then lease their homes from the investors for two to four years, before having the opportunity to repurchase those homes at a cost of 90-100% of the home’s market value. Through these representations, the defendants are alleged to have unlawfully obtained more than $133,000 from their clients.

Continue Reading…

David W. Griffin, 44, Lutz, Florida, pleaded guilty to one count of bankruptcy fraud and one count of making a false statement under oath during a bankruptcy proceeding in connection with a foreclosure rescue scheme.  Griffin faces a maximum penalty of 5 years in federal prison for each charge. A sentencing date has not yet been set.

According to court documents, Griffin operated a foreclosure rescue scheme through his companies, Bay2Bay Area Holding, LLC and Business Development Consultants, LLC.  The purpose of the scheme was to obtain quitclaim or warranty deeds from distressed homeowners facing foreclosure in return for false promises to rescue their homes from foreclosure by negotiating with creditors, renting the property back to the homeowner to obtain rental income, and falsely promising that the homeowner could repurchase the property from Griffin.  To maximize his rental income, Griffin also prevented creditors and guarantors, including the Federal National Mortgage Association (“Fannie Mae”) and the Federal Housing Administration, from pursuing lawful foreclosure and eviction actions against homeowners who had defaulted on their mortgages. This was accomplished by filing, or causing to be filed, fraudulent bankruptcies in the names of the homeowners without their knowledge or consent. Continue Reading…

Scammers are trying to take advantage of struggling families by promising to buy homes for quick cash warns the North Carolina Attorney General.

These scammers send postcards and put out signs proclaiming, “We buy homes!” But rather than buying houses as advertised, most of these companies will try to convince you to sign over control of your home. The company then leases the property out to a new tenant. As a result, you lose rights to your home but remain on the hook for mortgage payments. Homebuyers or tenants can also be hit hard by these scams, which can advertise homes in deceptive rent-to-own agreements for big upfront fees. Continue Reading…

A friend of mine approached me about using my credit to help people who were losing their homes. If you’re born into a life of service, this is the kind of stuff that you do.

Pennsylvania State Senator Anthony Williams, explaining his involvement in a foreclosure rescue

Trial delayed for fraud suspect

The trial for a woman who was allegedly involved in a $3 million real estate scheme is on hold after the judge halted proceedings for the day Monday.

Jennifer Ann McTigue is accused of defrauding new homeowners, title companies and banks in a complex investment scheme.

Tamara Tikal, 45, Rio Vista, California was sentenced to three years and nine months in prison for her conviction for conspiring to commit mail fraud in relation to a foreclosure rescue scheme. Tamara Tikal was also ordered to pay $3,671,000 in restitution to victims of the offense by United States District Judge Troy L. Nunley.

Tamara Tikal’s husband Alan Tikal was convicted following a bench trial and sentenced to 24 years in prison. Tamara Tikal pleaded guilty to the conspiracy in August 2014, as did co-defendant Ray Kornfeld, who was sentenced to five years in prison.  Continue Reading…

Zavier Kay Hafiz, Arizona, plead guilty on May 7, 2015 to Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices and was sentenced to six years in prison, followed by another seven years of probation.  In addition, he was ordered to pay $3,554,838.40 in restitution. Hafiz, who was doing business as ZK Group, was charged after an FBI-led investigation revealed his company fraudulently misled nearly forty victims to whom he sold real estate throughout Arizona. Continue Reading…

Prison for O.C. woman who offered bogus foreclosure relief

A 30-year-old Costa Mesa woman pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal charges stemming from a foreclosure rescue fraud scheme that targeted homeowners with bogus promises of mortgage relief.

Najia Jalan entered her plea in Los Angeles federal court to charges of mail fraud and aggravated identity theft.