Thursday, July 14, 2011

Miami Feds Pinch Four In Alleged Refinance Ripoff; Reverse Mtg Proceeds Illegally Diverted, Existing Liens Remain Unpaid; Some Seniors Face F'closure

In Miami, Florida, The Miami Herald reports:

  • Three South Florida mortgage professionals conspired with a Pittsburgh title agent to defraud senior citizens through a reverse mortgage scam, according to allegations unveiled Wednesday by U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer.

  • Through 1st Continental Mortgage Company, which has offices in Fort Lauderdale and Boca Raton, the group processed 14 reverse mortgages across the country and did not use the mortgage money to pay off the existing loans, the U.S. attorney charges.

  • Louis Gendason, John Incadela, Marcos Echevarria of 1st Continental, and Kimberly Mackey, a title agent in Pittsburgh, obtained $2.5 million in reverse mortgage loans from Genworth Financial between 2009 and 2010.

  • They are charged with pocketing nearly $1 million in illegal loan proceeds, and each faces one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The reverse mortgage loans are insured by the Federal Housing Administration.

  • There are multiple levels of fraud in this one case,” said Ferrer. “Because of this fraud, some of these [victims] are having to fight off foreclosure.”


  • These are seniors who are on Medicare, limited incomes, desperate for help,” said Tony West, U.S. assistant attorney general for the Civil Division. “Money that should’ve gone to help seniors with modest incomes instead went to line the pockets of fraudsters.”

For more, see Reverse mortgage scam targeted seniors (A South Florida company engaged in a $2.5 million reverse mortgage fraud scheme, according to charges revealed Wednesday by the U.S. Attorney’s Office).


The South Florida Sun Sentinel adds:

  • In a separate action, the Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit in March that named Incandela and Lower My, a loan modification operation based at 1st Continental's Boca address, in a crackdown on foreclosure rescue and mortgage modification businesses. The FTC said the company falsely promised consumers they would get their mortgage payments reduced or their money would be refunded.(1)

For more, see South Florida seniors targeted in mortgage fraud, officials say.


From the Office of the U.S. Attorney (Miami, Florida):


(1) See FTC Charges Mortgage Relief Operation with Deceiving Distressed Homeowners.

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