HUD loan specialist Brian Thompson will spend 26 months in prison and was also ordered to pay restitution for orchestrating the scam. In October, Thompson pleaded guilty to the wire-fraud scheme.
Thompson’s criminal history only came to light recently when prosecutors outlined convictions and charges of armed robbery, theft and larceny against him. Despite his record, which spanned more than two decades, Thompson was able to land the job at HUD making nearly $90,000 annually.
HUD officials are now looking into how Thompson fell through the cracks.
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“We are reviewing the portion of the Personal Identity Verification (PIV) process that HUD controls to understand why there were no background flags,” agency spokesman Jereon M. Brown wrote in an email Tuesday to The Washington Times
. “Something should have definitely come up during the background check.”
Thompson carried out the wire-fraud scheme from May 2013 to March 2014, while he was working for HUD’s Office of Loan Guarantee for Native American programs, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice.
“Brian Thompson will be a federal inmate because of his crooked dealings,” U.S. Attorney Machen said. “He ripped off the taxpayer and harmed the integrity of a program designed to help underprivileged Native American homeowners. Public service is a calling, not a get-rich-quick opportunity. I want to thank the other public servants at the Office of Native American Programs who came forward and raised concerns about Thompson’s conduct.”
A former Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) employee who secured the position despite a criminal record and then stole more than $843,000 was sentenced to federal prison Wednesday.