Archive for Thursday, June 18, 2009

Basehor resident charged with fraud

June 18, 2009

A Basehor man is among 10 people indicted in a $3 million mortgage fraud case.

U. S. Attorney Lanny Welch identified those charged as Lucas R. Collier, 27, Basehor; Eric M. Rabicoff, 26, Hutchinson; Jason L. Rabicoff, 33, Overland Park; Anthony E. Carollo, 31, Raytown, Mo.; Deborah Saulmon, 50, Olathe; Bora Ly, 27, Raytown, Mo.; Anthony “Gabe” Painton Jr., 29, Kansas City, Mo.; Kong Bun Ly, 29, Kansas City, Mo.; Rebecca Gelwix, 24, West Des Moines, Iowa; and Richard Ngek, 25, Lee’s Summit, Mo.

Each are charged with mortgage fraud.

According to the indictment, in 2006, Eric Rabicoff devised a scheme to defraud lenders by recruiting straw buyers to purchase homes that were for sale by owners. It was part of the scheme to submit false information to lenders so that borrowers received loans for which they were not qualified. The loans were made on properties in Olathe, Kansas City, Mo., and Lee’s Summit, Mo.

Rabicoff, the government alleges, recruited straw buyers to take title for a short time to houses and to obtain loans on the houses. He convinced the straw buyers he would buy the homes and remove their names from the loan obligations. He represented he already had renters for the properties whose rental payments would cover the mortgage payments until Rabicoff purchased the properties from the straw buyers. Rabicoff is alleged to have recruited Collier as a straw buyer. Collier, in turn, recruited Painton and Bora Ly. They recruited Gelwix, Kong Bun Ly and Ngek.

The government alleges none of the straw buyers were qualified to receive home loans.

Jason Rabicoff, who is Eric Rabicoff’s brother, was a loan officer for Apex Financial, a mortgage company in Olathe that brokered loans through Clarion Mortgage of Overland Park. At his brother’s direction, Jason Rabicoff assembled loan files on the straw buyers, including false reports on rent history, employment and income, the government said.

Carollo, Collier’s cousin, was the manager of Gourmet Grocers, a small, family-owned business that all the straw buyers listed as their employer. Carollo, prosecutors said, was paid to provide false Verification of Employment forms to lenders. Saulmon, who owned a property management company called Essential Properties, provided false Verification of Rent forms to lenders.

Eric Rabicoff submitted false invoices to title companies seeking payment for making improvements to properties when the improvements had never been made. The lenders paid the money to MSM Enterprises, a company set up by Rabicoff. Prosecutors say, at Eric Rabicoff’s direction, Collier, Ly and Painton set up shell companies including Cappo Investment Agency, LL., Global Investing LLC and AJs Investment Group to receive proceeds from the conspiracy.

The government is seeking the forfeiture of more than $3 million on proceeds from the crime. Upon conviction, the alleged crimes have penalities of:

Conspiracy: A maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison.

Bank Fraud: A maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison on each count.

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