7 Cops And An FBI Agent Charged In Florida Mortgage Fraud Ring

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Federal prosecutors in Florida have accused eight current and former law enforcement officers, along with a group of attorneys and mortgage brokers, with falsifying documents to obtain $16.5 million in loans in order to buy and flip real estate, reports the Miami Herald.Feds allege that the Broward County-based group’s members — including seven current and former police officers, plus an FBI agent — “posed as ‘straw’ buyers who pledged to buy and live in 38 condos and homes in Broward and Palm Beach counties,” according to the Herald. But instead, the group rented the houses, and then sold them at a profit.

“This indictment charges a group of individuals who conspired to enrich themselves by committing mortgage fraud,” U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer said. “It includes a number of professionals who betrayed their profession for greed, and in the process, undermined the integrity of the mortgage marketplace on which we all rely.”

The Herald reports that one of the two attorneys charged, Steven Stoll, a GOP fundraiser who’s contributed $4,800 to Gov. Charlie Crist, was one of the lawyers who “fought with Broward’s canvassing board about the 2000 presidential recount.”

The defendants are scheduled to appear in court today.

Read the rest here.

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Eric Lach is a reporter for TPM. From 2010 to 2011, he was a news writer in charge of the website?s front page. He has previously written for The Daily, NewYorker.com, GlobalPost and other publications. He can be reached at ericl@talkingpointsmemo.com
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