NJ Man Pleads Guilty in $2 Million Short Sale Scam – NMP Skip to main content

NJ Man Pleads Guilty in $2 Million Short Sale Scam

NationalMortgageProfessional.com
Apr 24, 2014

The Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) has announced that Delio Coutinho of Colonia, N.J., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton in Newark, N.J., federal court to an information charging him with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Through the plea, Coutinho admitted his role in a large-scale mortgage fraud scheme that caused millions of dollars in losses. According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court: Coutinho was a loan officer at a northern New Jersey mortgage brokerage company. From March 2008 through June 2012, Coutinho and his co-defendants conspired with each other and others to release liens on encumbered properties via fraudulently arranged short sale transactions. This allowed Coutinho and his co-defendants to profit from new fraudulent mortgage loans obtained on the properties from other mortgage lenders. To complete the short sale transactions, Coutinho and his codefendants submitted materially false closing and other documents to mortgage lenders. They submitted fraudulent mortgage loan applications to lenders, which included TARP banks, to obtain new loans on properties in and around Elizabeth, N.J. “The fraudulent mortgage scheme that Coutinho and his co-conspirators committed is precisely the sort of fraud that helped lead to the nation’s financial crisis in 2008,” said Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for TARP (SIGTARP). “Coutinho, a loan officer at a New Jersey mortgage brokerage, with the help of others, fraudulently arranged short sales on numerous properties in New Jersey, only to turn around and obtain financing for new mortgages on the properties by defrauding mortgage lenders, including TARP banks. To obtain the mortgages, Coutinho and others sent the lenders false documentation including fake bank statements, false tax returns, inflated earnings and asset statements, and bogus employment information. Coutinho and his co-conspirators then distributed the proceeds of the loans – eventually totaling $2 million – among themselves and others. If you defraud a TARP bank, SIGTARP and our law enforcement partners will bring you to justice and hold you accountable for your crimes.” Coutinho’s co-defendants included Jose Luis Salguero Bedoya of Elizabeth, N.J., a real estate investor who, along with his girlfriend, Yazmin Soto-Cruz of Elizabeth, N.J., provided much of the funds used by the defendants to perpetuate the fraudulent schemes. Christopher Ju of Edison, N.J., negotiated the fraudulent short sale real estate transactions. In all, Coutinho and the others obtained approximately $2 million in illegal mortgage proceeds. The conspiracy count to which Coutinho pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of 30 years in prison and a $100,000 fine.
Published
Apr 24, 2014
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