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Las Vegas Criminal Defense

Mortgage Fraud and Straw Buyers

On June 17, 2010, the United States Department of Justice announced the results of a nationwide mortgage fraud task force code-named “Operation Stolen Dreams.” As of that date, the operation had netted 1,215 criminal defendants nationwide, including 485 arrests, who are allegedly responsible for more than $2.3 billion in losses.

Criminal charges had been filed against 123 of those defendants in Southern Nevada. In other words, over 10% of the criminal charges filed nationwide in Operation Stolen Dreams originated here in Southern Nevada. The local United States Attorney’s Office has indicated that they aim to continue to identify and prosecute those who orchestrated “straw buyer” schemes and reaped fraudulent gains through mortgage fraud.

A “straw buyer” scheme is one of the most common forms of mortgage fraud. In a straw buyer scheme, one person purchases a house on behalf of another person who would not normally qualify for a home loan. The straw buyer either has good credit or falsifies credit information to qualify for the loan.

Often the straw buyer gets a percentage of the proceeds of the loan, and the actual borrower is either left with the debt or lets the house go into foreclosure. In many cases, the people involved will sell the property to new straw buyers, and the scheme will start all over again.

If you have been accused of straw buyer mortgage fraud, the experienced attorneys at the Christiansen Trial Lawyers are here to stand up for your rights.

Contact us today online or by telephone at (702) 357-9977 to speak with a knowledgeable Las Vegas mortgage fraud defense attorney.

Nevada Real Estate Fraud Attorneys

It is easy for an innocent person to get caught up in a straw buyer scheme. In many cases, the perpetrators of such schemes will recruit victims who they manipulate to help them execute mortgage fraud.

To convict you of fraud, the prosecution must prove criminal intent. It may very well be the case that you had no knowledge that criminal activity was taking place. We will carefully examine the details of your case to determine if you had no intention of committing a crime. For instance:

  • You were tricked into falsifying income and making other false statements
  • The mortgage application was handled by someone else and you had no knowledge it was handled fraudulently
  • You may have mistakenly made a false statement
  • Your identity was stolen and used by someone else to falsify a mortgage document

Depending upon the criminal charge and the amount of loss alleged, mortgage fraud defendants can potentially face up to 30 years in prison per count if convicted. At Christiansen Trial Lawyers our attorneys have extensive experience representing individuals charged with mortgage fraud, including persons charged as a result of Operation Stolen Dreams.

Let Us Help You

If you are a straw buyer, broker, lender, real estate agent or investor who is under investigation or have been charged with mortgage fraud by the federal government, please contact our office immediately to arrange a free consultation.

Contact us today online or by telephone at (702) 357-9977 to speak with an experienced Las Vegas straw buyer fraud defense attorney.

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