Head Of Document Mill Currently Serving 40 Months To 20 Years In Michigan For Role In Cranking Out Fraudulent Foreclosure Paperwork Gets Five Years In Separate Federal Prosecution For Similar Antics
In Jacksonville, Florida, The Detroit News reports:
- The former president of a Georgia company that filed more than 1 million forged foreclosure documents in Michigan and other states was sentenced to five years in federal prison Tuesday.
Lorraine Brown, the former president of the DocX document processing firm in Georgia, was sentenced to five years in prison as well as two years of supervised release and ordered to pay a fine of $15,000 in U.S. District Court for the the Middle District of Florida.
Brown already is serving a sentence of 40 months to 20 years for fraud in Michigan. The sentence was handed down in May in Kent County Circuit Court.
“Today’s sentencing represents appropriate punishment for someone who sought to capitalize on the nation’s housing crisis,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Brown pleaded guilty to the charges in federal court and a related Missouri case in November, and was charged just a few days later in Michigan by Attorney General Bill Schuette.
DocX is out of business, but its parent company, Loan Processing Systems of Jacksonville, Fla., has cooperated with investigators and is paying out millions in fines and settlements.
- Complaints about DocX targeted the practice of “robo-signing,” in which legal documents required in foreclosures and other legal filings are signed with faked signatures, illegally back-dated or contain false information. Brown allegedly directed DocX workers to routinely sign the name “Linda Green” on thousands of filings in Michigan with vastly different handwriting.
Instead of having documents properly signed and legally notarized by authorized people, Brown directed her workers — including temporary help — to forge signatures in order ram through more documents and make more money, according to her plea agreements. Between 2003 and 2009, DocX generated approximately $60 million in gross revenue, according to the U.S. Justice Department.
The investigation into robo-signing began in April 2011, after several county clerks in Michigan examined their files following an expose of DocX in a “60 Minutes” broadcast. The Michigan Attorney General’s office found more than 1,000 fraudulent documents on file in the state.
According to a spokeswoman for the Michigan Attorney General’s office, Brown will serve at least her minimum sentence in Michigan, and will be transferred to federal prison to serve any remaining federal time. Brown is now jailed at the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility.
For the U.S. Department of Justice press release, see Former Executive at Florida-Based Lender Processing Services Inc. Sentenced to Five Years in Prison for Role in Mortgage-Related Document Fraud Scheme (Over 1 Million Documents Prepared and Filed with Forged and False Signatures, Fraudulent Notarizations).