Alabama Title Company Owner Charged Mortgage Fraud Scheme
May 6, 2010
The owner of an Alabama-based title company faces up to 20 years in prison and a $2 million fine for his alleged involvement in a mortgage fraud scheme, according to U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance.
Last week, federal prosecutors charged Jerry Eugene Parker, owner of Central Alabama Title, with two counts of mail fraud in connection to a mortgage fraud scheme. According to the charges, Parker aided and abetted others to perpetrate a fraud through the mail that assisted in the commission of a larger mortgage fraud.
“Title companies are supposed to protect lenders and property owners by making sure that the person seeking a loan on a property is the rightful owner. They are in a position to catch fraud,” Vance said. “This defendant violated the core of his position of trust by not only allowing a fraud to go unchecked, but by assisting in carrying it out. This type of financial fraud is a priority of this Justice Department. It will be prosecuted."
It’s alleged that Parker, while owning and operating Central Alabama Title between January 2005 and July 2007, would obtain the title of a property to be sold and apply for a refinance loan on the property. When the time came to close on the refinance loan, Parker, or an employee of his, would change the title of the property to fraudulently reflect that the person applying for the refinance loan was the current property owner, according to the lawsuit. Parker is accused of back-dating the title to reflect that the person seeking the refinance loan was the past and current owner of the property.
The information charges that Parker made the changes so it would appear to the lending institution that the person applying for a refinance loan was the owner who held a legitimate equity in the property. In truth, the person applying for the loan was a new buyer who would not have been eligible to receive a refinance loan.