Through a nationwide mortgage fraud sweep, titled “Operation Stolen Dreams,” that caught 485 people, Miami authorities arrested two individuals targeting the Haitian-American community, falsely leading victims to believe that they could assist them with immigration and housing issues, according to Flipping Frenzy.
The victims’ personal information was then used on false documents in order to receive mortgage loans.
Since the project’s initiation on March 1, 2010, nearly $11 million has been recovered; while not close to the estimated losses of over $2 billion due to fraud schemes, the government hopes to continually make progress. Flipping Frenzy reported that the Bureau is currently pursuing over 3,000 cases, and over 330 convictions have been obtained.
“Mortgage fraud ruins lives, destroys families, and devastates whole communities,” Attorney General Eric Holder said at a press conference.
Florida has been identified as one of several “hot spots” for mortgage fraud, among 23 other locations; therefore, a task force has been designated for each spot.
“FBI agents and analysts are using intelligence, enhanced surveillance, and undercover operations to identify emerging trends and to find the key players behind large-scale fraud,” FBI Director Robert S. Mueller said to Flipping Frenzy.
From home buyers to lenders, mortgage fraud has had a resounding impact on the nation’s economy,” Mueller continued. “Those who prey on the housing market should know that hundreds of FBI agents on task forces and their law enforcement partners are tracking down your schemes, and you will be brought to justice.”
Last week, we reported on a story involving foreclosed properties being used in rental scams, read it here.