Cheap Detroit Homes And Straw Deals Don’t Mix As Nine Detroiters Head To Federal Prison For Mortgage Fraud 

Cheap Detroit homes and straw deals land nine Metro-Detroiters in federal prison. Five of the fraudsters were sentenced to prison this week for their roles in a multi-year mortgage fraud conspiracy.  The conspirators recruited straw buyers to purchase 20 homes that were sold at prices ranging from $72,000 to $146,000. Consequently, each of the homes ultimately went into foreclosure. Furthermore, these foreclosures cost the affected banks an estimated $10 million.

The fraudsters purchased cheap Detroit homes for approximately $5,000 to $40,000 each and then re-sold the homes to third party “straw buyers” that they recruited.  The co-conspirators then helped the straw buyers obtain fraudulent mortgage loans.

A Grand Jury returned an indictment in July of 2014 charging seven defendants with conspiracy to commit bank fraud. the indictment alleged the fraudsters aided and assisted in the filing of false tax returns. All of the defendants named in the indictment pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud. 

The Fraudsters Are Sentenced

Judge Bernard A. Friedman announced the following sentences on January 11th and 12th:

  • Jason Najor was sentenced to 16 months in prison with four years of supervised release. He is also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $705,900.
  • Jeffrey Najor was sentenced to 24 months in prison with four years of supervised release. Najor was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $1,707,200.
  • Suhail Hallak was sentenced to 15 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. He was ordered to pay restitution to the affected financial institutions in the amount of $759,804.
  • Joey Murad was sentenced to 33 months in prison followed by four years of supervised release. He was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $188,904.
  • Al Karana was sentenced to one day in jail followed by three years of supervised release and one year of home confinement. He was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $204,600.

Two of the defendants named in the indictment were previously sentenced to prison. Wasseem Shamoun was sentenced to 15 months in prison and ordered to pay $394,000. Shamoun pled guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud. Peter Allen was sentenced to 21 months in prison. He was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $194,300.

In addition to the seven defendants named in the indictment, two other individuals connected to the cheap Detroit homes scheme have pleaded guilty and been sentenced to prison.

Mary Ann Paschal was sentenced to one year and one day in prison and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $523,750. Paschal served as a straw buyer on several of the properties. Mortgage Broker Shawn Alexander Reed also pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 15 months in prison.  

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