Minnesota Woman Charged With Assisting Fraud Scam
A real estate agent, Barbara Lynnae Puro of Savage, Minn., has been charged in the District of Minnesota by Information with participating in a multi-million dollar mortgage fraud scheme that victimized lenders nationwide. Puro allegedly arranged for homeowners to sell their properties to straw buyers at inflated prices. In each case, she then purportedly funneled to the scheme's masterminds the difference between the amount a particular home seller would accept and that home's inflated sale price. The Information specifically alleges that, on Nov. 20, 2006, she funneled by way of wire transfer $396,252.14 in fraud proceeds. From August through November of 2006, Puro purportedly aided and abetted the scheme's masterminds, Zack Zafer Dyab of Golden Valley, Minn. and Julia Alexander Rozhansky of Minnetonka, Minn. They were federally indicted in December of 2009 with supplying mortgage loan lenders with fraudulent documents to support loans well in excess of actual home prices. For her part, Puro allegedly facilitated the sale of 15 of the 35 Twin Cities' properties subject to the fraud scheme. As a result, Puro collected substantial real estate commissions and secured future business from Dyab and Rozhansky. The total loss attributable to Puro's actions is approximately $4,028,340. If convicted, Puro faces a potential maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. All sentences will be determined by a federal district court judge. This case is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-Criminal Investigation Division. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christian S. Wilton. For more information, visit www.minneapolis.fbi.gov.