Woman Sentenced for Diverting Escrow Funds

Allison Tussey —  May 31, 2011 — 1 Comment

Shawn Chambers-Galis, 48, Mt. Joy, Pennsylvania, following a three-day jury trial before U.S. District Court Judge William W. Caldwell, was sentenced to 57 months’ incarceration on charges she defrauded a local real estate settlement firm and a national real estate title insurance company out of more than $258,894.

Chambers-Galis was convicted of wire fraud. Testimony at the trial revealed that between 2005 and 2007 Chambers-Galis diverted more than $273,000 from the escrow accounts of Donegal Settlement Services, a real estate closing firm Chambers-Galis co-owned and operated in Jacobus, Pennsylvania, and Mt. Joy, and converted the funds to her own use. As a result, mortgages that should have been paid off by Donegal at real estate closings were not, in fact, paid off and the Commonwealth Land Title Company (“Land America“) had to eventually pay $258,894 to clear the titles to the properties.

The evidence showed Chambers-Galis deposited at least $142,691 of the diverted funds into her personal checking account at the Union National Bank. Chambers-Galis made some of the checks she embezzled payable to cash and forged the signature on others made payable to herself. To conceal her scheme from discovery Chambers-Galis secretly wired $18,000 in monthly mortgage payments to a Texas based, mortgage lending company. Chambers-Galis also converted another $22,500 from the escrow account to her own use, by employing the funds to purchase an Exit Realty real estate agency franchise. After deliberating for approximately three hours, the jury acquitted Chambers-Galis on four related unlawful monetary transaction counts.

Judge Caldwell also ordered Chambers-Galis to pay $258,894 restitution and to undergo three years of supervised release following her release from prison. Chambers-Galis will begin serving her sentence on June 21, 2011.

Peter J. Smith, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, announced the sentence.

The case was investigated by the Harrisburg Office of the FBI and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kim Douglas Daniel.

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Allison Tussey

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One response to Woman Sentenced for Diverting Escrow Funds

  1. ITS GOOD TO KNOW THAT SOMEONE GOT OFF THEIR BUTT AND WENT AFTER THE SCAMERS.THAT PERSON WHO WAS GIVEN 57 MONTHS STOLE LESS THAN 10% OF THE LOSS AT ONE T/H PROJECT IN HARRIS COUNTY TX.THE ASSESMENTS HAVE BEEN DIVERTED TO SO CALLED INVESTORS.(RENT TO OWN ARTIST,BUY PROPERTY FOR $7000 AND SELL FOR 40 TO 60 THOUSAND PLUS) I HAVE BEEN THREATENED BECAUSE OF MY VIEWS AND OTHERS HAVE HAD BULLETS TAPED TO THEIR DOORS.THATS WHY I CARRY A PISTOL WITH ME AT ALL TIMES. THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA WILL BE GIVEN THE NAMES OF THOSE PERSONS FROM ORANGE AND SAN DIEGO COUNTIES. G.UBER USN RET.

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