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Category Archives: Fraud

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Norcross Residents Plead Guilty to Defrauding FEMA of Hurricane Ike Relief Funds

Posted in False Claims, Fraud

All the way from Imperial Valley News comes news that John A. Wheeler and Melody Lockett Carter pled guilty on Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia to one count of theft of government money for fraudulently obtaining FEMA assistance funds intended for victims of Hurricane Ike. Wheeler and Carter,… Continue Reading

Former Judge and Candidate for DeKalb Superior Court Pleads Guilty to Fraud

Posted in Fraud

Attorney Michael Rothenberg, a former candidate for Judge of the Superior Court of DeKalb County, Stone Mountain Judicial Circuit, and former Judge of the DeKalb County Recorder’s Court,¬†pled guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia on September 11, 2013, on charges that Rothenberg fraudulently persuaded a company, WinterHawk Energy and… Continue Reading

9th Circuit Reverses CA City Treasurer’s “Honest Services Fraud” Convictions

Posted in Acquittal, Fraud

On Monday, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ordered Albert Robles, former Treasurer for South Gate, California, acquitted on three charges for “honest services fraud,” 18 U.S.C. 1346, which Mr. Robles had been convicted on in 2006. The Court also reversed the honest services conviction of Robles’ business associate, George Garrido. The reversals were… Continue Reading

3 UBS Execs Convicted of Municipal Bond Bid Fraud

Posted in Fraud

Three former Union Bank of Switzerland–UBS–executives were convicted on Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, as reported by NASDAQ. Peter Ghavami, Gary Heinz and Michael Welty were found guilty of fraud relating to bids to invest the proceeds from municipal bonds and other municipal finance contracts between 2001… Continue Reading

New Jersey Senator Acquitted of Corruption Charges

Posted in Fraud

From the reporters at NorthJersey.com comes news that former New Jersey State Senator Wayne Bryant was acquitted last Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New Jersey. The charges against Bryant were based upon a “monthly retainer” agreement between Bryant and Eric Wisler, a developer and partner in the DeCotiis Law… Continue Reading

National Lampoon’s Federal Fraud Trial

Posted in Fraud

The trial of the former CEO for the National Lampoon, Inc., Timothy S. Durham, on ten counts of wire fraud and one count of securities fraud, commenced yesterday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, as reported by the San Francisco Chronicle. Durham is alleged to have defrauded approximately 5,000 investors,… Continue Reading

KY Attorney Bryan Coffman Ordered to Forfeit Millions from Oil-Drilling Scam

Posted in Forfeiture, Fraud

Lexington, Kentucky, attorney Bryan Coffman was convicted last year in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky on eight counts of mail fraud, nine counts of wire fraud, two counts of securities fraud, 10 counts of money laundering and one count of money laundering conspiracy. His wife, Megan Coffman, was acquitted of the… Continue Reading

Horse Soring – A Federal Crime

Posted in Fraud

Largely playing out under the radar, except in local media, is a fascinating case out of the Eastern District of Tennessee. Last week 4 defendants, Jackie L. McConnell, 60, Jeff Dockery, 54, John Mays, 50, all from Collierville, Tennessee and Joseph R. Abernathy, 30, of Olive Branch, Miss., were arrested on a 52 count indictment… Continue Reading

Execs of Medical Laser Manufacturer Acquitted on Most Counts

Posted in Acquittal, Fraud

As reported by the Colorado Springs Gazette, former Chief Executive Officer John Schulte of Spectranetics Corp., a manufacturer of medical lasers, was convicted in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado yesterday on one count of lying to federal investigators but was acquitted on 11 counts of conspiring to defraud the Federal government. Trung Pham,… Continue Reading

7th Circuit Reverses Mail and Wire Fraud Conviction of Contractor for Alleged Bid Rigging

Posted in Fraud, Mail/WIre/Honest Services Fraud

Steven Fenzl was the principal of Urban Services of America, Inc. ("Urban"). Fenzl was charged with alleged mail fraud and wire fraud in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The charges related to alleged bid-rigging under the Sherman Act on a 2005 contract to refurbish the City of Chicago’s garbage carts…. Continue Reading

You Can’t Make This Stuff Up

Posted in Fraud, Money Laundering

The press release from the Northern District of Georgia announcing the guilty plea by novelist Mitchell Gross to wire fraud and money laundering charges has a great line: “Much like the novels this defendant wrote, the stories he told to his victims to entice them to entrust him with their money or their legal business… Continue Reading

Former Cartersville, GA, Mayor Sentenced for Mortgage Fraud

Posted in Fraud, Mortgage and Foreclosure Fraud

H. Gregory Cordell, the former Mayor of Cartersville, Georgia, was sentenced to over two years imprisonment last Friday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia for mortgage fraud, as reported by the Chattanoogan. According to statements by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, Cordell inflated the purchase… Continue Reading

What is the Deal With this Administration’s Handling of the Mortgage Crisis?

Posted in Bank Fraud, Financial Institution Fraud, Fraud

I began working as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in 1990, just this side of the Savings and Loan crisis caused by the implosion of the real estate market and the criminal dealings in that industry. To understand how quickly history repeats itself, check out this interesting analysis by the FDIC and its ironic title –… Continue Reading

Northwest Georgia Banks and Credit Unions Hit By Debit Card Fraud

Posted in Fraud, Identity Theft

Federal investigators are investigating an outbreak of debit card fraud in Northwest Georgia, according to a story by WCRtv in Chattanooga. Customers of the Bank of LaFayette, Cohutta Banking Company, and Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union in Chickamauga, LaFayette, Rossville and Trion in Northwest Georgia have reported having their accounts drained. Authorities believe that the… Continue Reading

Florida Attorney and Police Officers Acquitted of Federal Mortgage Fraud Charges

Posted in Acquittal, Fraud

Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida have dropped charges of mortgage fraud against Plantation, Florida, attorney Steven Stoll and police officer Dennis Guarancino, according to the Miami Herald. Stoll and Guarancino were charged in relation to a $16.5 million dollar loan fraud scheme by Guarancino’s brother, Joseph Guarancino, also… Continue Reading

California Businessman Acquitted on Tax Charges; Did Not Review or Authorize Tax Filings Due to Kidnapping of Son

Posted in Acquittal, Fraud

Earlier this month, as reported in the Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch, a Federal jury in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California acquitted Howard H. Berger, a business consultant, on four criminal tax charges. The charges stemmed from Mr. Berger’s alleged filing of 2006 personal and partnership tax returns allegedly claiming a… Continue Reading

Atlanta Man Indicted in New York for Securities Fraud, Insider Trading

Posted in Fraud, indictment, Securities Fraud

Image source: www.google.com/imgres Scott Allen, of Atlanta, was charged last week with securities fraud and insider trading in the U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, according to the Wall Street Journal. The government alleges that Mr. Allen and John Bennett of Norwalk, Connecticut, conspired to make more than $2.6 million in profits on insider trades… Continue Reading

Fayetteville Man Indicted on Federal Charges for Defrauding Colleges and Universities

Posted in Arraignment, Fraud, indictment

The season for college sports is upon us once again and what better way to honor the occasion than with a bit of news from 7th Space Interactive that Dale Brannan, of Fayetteville, Georgia, has been indicted in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia for defrauding various universities and colleges, including… Continue Reading

Real Estate Market May Be Down, But Mortgage Fraud Rising

Posted in Fraud, Mortgage and Foreclosure Fraud

Al Lewis of the Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch reports that mortgage fraud is surprisingly on the rise despite the current weakness in the housing market. Mr. Lewis cites the FBI’s report on mortgage fraud for 2010, which reports that mortgage brokers, appraisers, underwriters, accountants, real-estate agents, settlement attorneys, land developers, investors, builders, lenders, and bank and trust account… Continue Reading

Marietta Executive Pleads Guilty in Rhode Island In Navy Kickback Scheme

Posted in Fraud

The Washington Post reports today that Patrick Nagle, of Marietta, Georgia, pled guilty last week in the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island to conspiracy to commit bribery. Nagle was formerly the Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Solutions for Tomorrow (AST), which was awarded contracts by the U.S. Navy. The prosecution alleged that… Continue Reading

Former CEO of Kansas Utility Westar Energy Receives $36 Million Settlement, Plus $3.1 Million in Legal Fees for Dismissed Criminal Prosecution

Posted in Fraud, Mistrial

Westar Energy, the largest electrical utility in the State of Kansas, announced last week that it will pay former Chief Executive Officer, President and Chairman of the Board, David Wittig $36 million as an arbitration settlement relating to Wittig’s compensation contract, as well as $3.1 million in attorney’s fees and $2.7 million in stock compensation,… Continue Reading