Man sentenced over $20m mortgage fraud

by MPA13 Jan 2014
A Virginia man has been sentenced to more than 4 years in prison for his role in a $20 million mortgage fraud scheme.

Robert Mikail, a 41-year-old former jeweler, was sentenced to 52 months in prison and three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay about $6 million in restitution to lenders and to forfeit more than $882,000 of the proceeds of his crimes to the government, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

According to prosecutors, Mikail conspired with others to obtain fraudulent mortgage loans. He recruited five straw buyers for the scheme, then falsified information on their loan applications in order to make sure they qualified for the loans. Almost all the applications falsely identified the buyers’ employer as Opus Jewelry, a store owned by Mikail. When the lenders called the store, Mikail would falsely verify the buyers’ incomes.
Prosecutors say Mikail and his co-conspirators fraudulently purchased about 36 homes between 2005 and 2007, obtaining about $20 million in loan proceeds. Mikail personally profited to the tune of $882,387, according to prosecutors. All the loans ultimately defaulted, sticking the lenders with about $6 million in losses.

Two of Mikail’s co-conspirators, loan officers Bing-Sing “Cindy” Wang and Ging-Hwang “Felicia” Tsoa, have already been convicted in the scam. Wang was sentenced to 24 months in prison in February 2013. Tsoa is scheduled for sentencing next month.



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