Attorney faces 30 years over mortgage fraud

by Ryan Smith17 Feb 2014
A Connecticut attorney faces up to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty in federal court to mortgage fraud charges.

Christopher Brecciano, 35, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, according to the Stamford Daily Voice.

Prosecutors say Brecciano took part in a scam that defrauded financial institutions and involved dozens of properties. According to the Daily Voice, he acted as a closing attorney for at least 50 mortgage transactions between 2006 and 2010. In all of these transactions, lenders were given fraudulent information by either Brecciano or his co-conspirators.

In several of the transactions, a straw buyer was used, while other people intended to control the property, the Daily Voice reported. In many transactions, Brecciano disbursed loan funds to the straw buyers and his co-conspirators at closing.

Many of the properties involved in the scam went into foreclosure or were sold in short sales, the Daily Voice reported. Lenders defrauded by the scheme lost more than $7 million.

Brecciano admitted in court that he was also involved in several short sale transactions where the sale was represented as an “arm’s-length” transaction but in which the buyer and seller were colluding to retain control of the property together, the Daily Voice reported.
Brecciano will be sentenced May 7. The FBI is continuing to investigate the scam, according to the Daily Voice.

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