Posted Jun 15, 2011 08:52 pm CDT
Saying that lies upon lies underpinning a massive mortgage fraud had devastated Atlanta’s housing market, a federal appeals court yesterday upheld the conviction and 28-year prison term imposed upon its ringleader.
Phillip Hill, 54, appropriately got more time than other defendants involved in the scheme, because he orchestrated it, the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals explains in a 163-page written opinion (PDF). It involved some $110 million in loans, most of which went into foreclosure, and nearly $40 million in losses to lenders.
Among multiple other defendants also convicted in cases related to Hill’s scheme were at least two lawyers, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
However, the 11th Circuit yesterday declined to uphold the conviction of Hill’s right-hand man, Les Rector, who cooperated but failed to reach a plea-bargain agreement with the government. Instead, it remanded the case and asked the district court to hold an evidentiary hearing to determine how material obtained from Rector was used.
Additional and related coverage:
ABAJournal.com (2008): “Appraiser in $41M Georgia Fraud Explains US Mortgage Meltdown”
AccessNorthGA.com (2007): “Cumming attorney sentenced for mortgage fraud”
Mortgage Fraud Blog (2010): “Mortgage Fraud Defendant Sentenced”