$7.9 million mortgage fraud scheme
South Florida, Florida
Greta Medina, the alleged organizer of the scheme, identified five properties used to defraud Wells Fargo Bank. Margaret Roberts, a real estate broker, allegedly negotiated the sales on Medina’s behalf.
Medina and other recruiters, including Dania Arguelles and Martin Mere, allegedly recruited straw buyers Melissa Ann Scher, Alfonso Velasco, Adan Vasquez, Yohamel Caballero and Alberto Lopera to submit fraudulent loan applications to the lender and paid off title agents to help close the sales.
Medina and the title agent, Karim Goding, are alleged to have submitted false documents to inflating the purchase prices.
At closing, the defendants allegedly diverted millions of dollars in loan proceeds by skimming the difference between the inflated purchase price and the price actually paid to the seller for the property, and allegedly used those loan proceeds to pay off their co-conspirators and "to fund lavish lifestyles," according to the news release.
The straw buyers defaulted on the loans and the properties went into foreclosure, resulting in losses to the lender in excess of $4.5 million.