Siblings Plead Guilty in $13M Mortgage Fraud Scheme
Two siblings have pleaded guilty to wire fraud charges in relation to a $13 million mortgage fraud scheme that was carried out between 2005 and 2009.
Ericvan McDavid, 36, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to one count of wire fraud and faces 20 years in prison. His sister, Renee McDavid, 38, pleaded guilty earlier this week to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and faces up to five years in prison.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, the McDavids ran a mortgage scheme from 2005 to 2009. During that time, Ericvan ran several businesses through which he bought, sold, and managed real estate.
To carry out the fraud scheme, “straw buyers” were recruited to purchase about 25 properties. These buyers were promised payments of $15,000 to $52,000 per transaction.
Once a buyer agreed to purchase a particular property, Ericvan provided funds to put toward the purchase, thereby misleading the lender into believing that the buyer actually had a financial interest in repaying the loan, when that was not the case.
The McDavid's produced false loan applications on behalf of the buyers. Those applications overstated the buyers' assets and employment status. Total loan proceeds amounting to about $13 million were obtained through the fraudulent loan applications.
Those proceeds were supposed to pay for the properties and other transaction-related expenses, but Ericvan admittedly used portions of them for personal use.
A sentencing date has not yet been set for either Ericvan nor Renee. Renee, a licensed real estate agent and mortgage broker, was only involved in the scheme from 2006 through 2008.
Minnesota residents Larry Africanus Hutchinson, 39, and Jerone Ian Mitchell, 35, were also indicted for participating in the scheme, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. Both have pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and are awaiting sentencing.