Ex-Attorney Sentenced In Mortgage Fraud Scheme

January 6, 2011 Updated Jan 6, 2011 at 5:12 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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Ex-Attorney Sentenced In Mortgage Fraud Scheme

January 6, 2011 Updated Jan 6, 2011 at 5:12 PM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y.-( release)- U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Robert R. Goods, 49, of Snyder, N.Y., who was convicted of bank fraud, was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay $521,800 restitution by Chief U.S. District Court William P. Skretny.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross, who handled the case, stated that Goods, a mortgage settlement attorney, misused money wired into his business account to pay off mortgages on properties which had been refinanced at SunTrust Bank. For example, in February 2010, SunTrust Bank wired $423,531.00 into the defendant's business account to pay off a pre-existing mortgage, however, Goods instead used that money for other matters. In another instance, in March 2010, SunTrust Bank wired $128,000.00 into the defendant's business account to pay off the pre-existing mortgage, but once again, he used the money for other things. As a result of the defendant's actions, SunTrust Bank suffered a loss of $521, 872. 84.

This law enforcement action is part of President Barack Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. President Obama established the interagency Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. The task force includes representatives from a broad range of federal agencies, regulatory authorities, inspectors general, and state and local law enforcement who, working together, bring to bear a powerful array of criminal and civil enforcement resources. The task force is working to improve efforts across the federal executive branch, and with state and local partners, to investigate and prosecute significant financial crimes, ensure just and effective punishment for those who perpetrate financial crimes, combat discrimination in the lending and financial markets, and recover proceeds for victims of financial crimes.

The plea was the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of the United States Secret Service, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tracy Gast.