Real Estate Fraud

Experienced, Aggressive Defense When Your Freedom Is at Stake

Is it a legitimate business practice or intentional criminal fraud? That is often the question.

We have witnessed an unprecedented level of real estate fraud from both lenders as well as consumers over the past five years. Many Real Estate investors feel victim to the lure of easy money and became trapped when the bottom feel out of the housing market. Due to questionable underwriting practices during the subprime mortgage disaster, state and federal law enforcement have redoubled efforts to crack down on real estate fraud. Investigators and auditors review loan applications to determine if the information provided was correct, ferret out “straw buyers,” and look for deviations from standard underwriting protocols.

If you or someone you know are involved in a real estate deal in theBay Area that is being scrutinized by investigators, contact the Real Estate Fraud Attorneys here at the firm today. We have offices in Oakland, Fremont, Concord, Pleasanton and Hayward.

At the firm, our criminal lawyers review the actions of investigators and work with forensic accountants and underwriting experts in order to expose weaknesses and questionable evidence against our clients. Our participation in the early stages of an investigation can often redirect the focus of an investigation away from our client or preempt further intrusion into the privacy of our client.

Regardless of whether you’ve already been indicted for real estate or mortgage fraud, or you are under investigation, contact our criminal defense law firm to schedule a free, confidential consultation.

Fighting Accusations of Real Estate and Mortgage Fraud

Our criminal defense attorneys advise and represent clients charged with real estate fraud and mortgage fraud involving the following:

  • House flipping
  • Use of straw buyers
  • Submitting fraudulent information on mortgage applications
  • Underwriting irregularities
  • Over-reporting income
  • Failure to report secondary residence

House Flipping, Mortgage Fraud, and Real Estate Investors

Before the subprime mortgage disaster, real estate investors would purchase a property and upgrade it in order to resell it at a profit. When the bottom began to fall out of the market, a number of real estate investors found themselves burdened with multiple mortgages they could not clear or no longer afford. In the process, debts and other financial information may not have always been accurately reported on mortgage applications.

In other instances, real estate investors who could not qualify — or did not want to qualify — for a mortgage using their own information, used “straw buyers” to front for a loan. This could be a relative, a friend, or a colleague. After the purchase and sale of a home or property, the real estate investor would then divide a portion of the profit with the straw buyer.

Fighting Allegations of Mortgage Fraud and Real Estate Fraud

In both kinds of fraud, investigators often assume there is criminal intent where there may be none. While ignorance of the law is not a defense to being charged, it may mean the difference between having the charges and sentence against you reduced or dropped and spending years in prison. That’s why our criminal attorneys tell our client’s side of the story, providing information that prosecutors often ignore in trying to paint the worst possible picture of a defendant.

As such, a defendant who may have strayed outside the law in order to buy time to regain his or her financial footing and set things right is different from someone who intentionally falsifies information as a grifter or crook. Unfortunately, prosecutors don’t always distinguish the two.

Contact The Criminal Lawyer Team

To schedule a consultation now regarding criminal defense during an investigation or after charges of theft, embezzlement or fraud, contact The Criminal Lawyer Team today.


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    State Certified Specialists
    Robert Beles - State Certified Criminal Law Specialist
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