White-Collar Crime

'Sting Operations' at Real Estate Closings Help Feds Nab Mortgage Fraud Suspects

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Federal prosecutors this week announced stepped-up enforcement against mortgage fraud and, at least in Georgia, they are apparently using a new weapon to pursue such cases.

U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates says “sting operations” at the real estate closing table are becoming part of the prosecution arsenal to combat mortgage fraud, reports the Associated Press. The article doesn’t detail how the stings are conducted.

A record-breaking Operation Stolen Dreams mortgage fraud enforcement program has involved 1,215 criminal defendants across the country and resulted in 485 arrests since March 1, the U.S. Department of Justice announced yesterday in a press release.

“Mortgage fraud ruins lives, destroys families and devastates whole communities, so attacking the problem from every possible direction is vital,” says Attorney General Eric Holder in the release. “We will use every tool available to investigate, prosecute and prevent mortgage fraud, and we will not rest until anyone preying on vulnerable American homeowners is brought to justice.”

Additional coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Real Estate Attorney Indicted re $1.5M in Personal Loans His Lawyer Says Are Paid-Up”

Atlanta Business Journal: “Feds arrest 485 in mortgage fraud crackdown”

FOX 9 News: “Operation Stolen Dreams Busts 36 in Minnesota for Mortgage Fraud”

Associated Press: “39 Oregon defendants in US mortgage fraud probe”

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