Couple pleads guilty to mortgage-modification scheme

by Francis Monfort02 Dec 2018

A couple has pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud related to a mortgage-modification scheme that scammed more than $140,000 from victims, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

According to court documents, Rodrigo Pardo of Argentina and Lorena Medina of Ecuador defrauded mortgage lenders and homeowners in Northern Virginia by promising the homeowners assistance in obtaining loan modifications.

The couple agreed to negotiate with the homeowners’ lenders for a reduced monthly payment. Pardo and Medina then instructed clients who were current on their mortgages to stop making payments to their lenders as they had in the past, and instead make payments into accounts controlled by Medina, Pardo, or a company they controlled.

At the same time, the couple represented to their clients’ mortgage lenders that their company was authorized to negotiate loan modifications. However, they concealed from the mortgage lenders that they were receiving mortgage payments from the victims.

In total, Pardo and Medina received more than $140,000 from their victims. The couple used the proceeds for personal expenses.

The charges of conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud carry a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.