A former executive with Lender Processing Services has been handed a five-year jail sentence for her role in a mortgage forgery scheme.
Lorraine Brown of Alpharetta, Ga., was involved with a six-year scheme to prepare and file more than one million fraudulently signed and notarized mortgage-related documents with property recorders’ offices throughout the U.S. Brown pleaded guilty in November 2012 to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.
In addition to her prison term, Brown was sentenced to serve two years of supervised release and ordered to pay a fine of $15,000.
Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman said Brown had fraudulently executed thousands of documents while our nation’s housing market was at its most vulnerable point in generations”.
Brown was an executive at LPS and the chief executive of DocX LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of LPS, until it was closed down in early 2010. DocX’s main clients were residential mortgage servicers, who hired the company to assist in creating and executing mortgage-related documents filed with recorders’ offices.
According to Brown’s plea agreement, employees of DocX, at the direction of Brown and others, began forging and falsifying signatures of authorized personnel on the mortgage-related documents that they had been hired to prepare and file with property recorders’ offices. Only specific personnel at DocX were authorized by clients to sign the documents, but the documents were fraudulently notarized as if actually executed by authorized DocX employees.
To further increase profits, DocX also hired temporary workers to act as authorized signers, who were able to sign thousands of mortgage-related instruments a day. Between 2003 and 2009, DocX generated approximately $60 million in gross revenue.
Brown admitted she understood that property recorders, courts, title insurers and homeowners relied upon the documents as genuine.