Former Bank Employee Sentenced in Mortgage Fraud Scheme
Sent False Documents on Bank Letterhead to Lenders to Carry Out Scheme Involving Over $19 Million in Fraudulent Loans
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 21, 2009|
BALTIMORE, MD—U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz sentenced Jamilah Al-Bari, age 37, of District Heights, Maryland, today to a year and a day in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for mail fraud arising from the fraudulent purchase of properties in Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Virginia, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein. Judge Motz also ordered Al-Bari to pay restitution of between $400,000 and $1 million, with the exact amount to be set at a later date.
According to her plea agreement, Jamilah Al-Bari participated in a scheme with her brother, Osman Sharrief Al-Bari, Terrence White, Timothy Reed and others to pay straw purchasers to purchase houses for them using false loan documents. Jamilah Al-Bari abused her position as a business banking liaison at M&T Bank in Upper Marlboro, Maryland and created false documents purporting to verify assets for the straw buyers. She also sent false verification letters concerning the buyers’ income and assets on M&T Bank letterhead to banks and mortgage lenders to facilitate the fraud scheme. Jamilah Al-Bari created a fictitious M&T Bank employee and used the fictitious employee’s name to sign some of the false verification letters.
Jamilah Al-Bari prepared false M&T Bank verification forms for straw buyers who purchased five properties in Baltimore and two properties in Spotsylvania, Virginia. Most of the purchased properties have gone into foreclosure. Jamilah Al-Bari received a check or cash payment, disguised as a “consulting fee,” for her role in the fraud scheme. She admitted her involvement in the scheme to M&T Bank investigators who questioned her before her termination.
Although this scheme involved fraudulent loans worth over $19,021,366, the loss amount foreseeable to Jamilah Al-Bari was between $400,000 and $1 million.
Kara McIntosh, age 47, and Sabrina Weinberg, age 44, both of Bethesda, Maryland, were sentenced to three years and two years in prison, respectively for mail fraud. Osman Sharrieff Al-Bari, age 35, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced to 78 months in prison. Terrence White, age 35, of Oxon Hill, Maryland, was sentenced to 42 months in prison. Timothy Reed, age 44, of Beltsville has also pleaded guilty to mail fraud in connection with his participation in this scheme, but has not yet been sentenced.
This prosecution has been brought as part of the Maryland Mortgage Fraud Task Force, a group of more than 15 federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in Maryland. The Task Force was formed to promote the early detection, identification, prevention, and prosecution of various kinds of mortgage fraud schemes. This case, as well as other cases brought by members of the Task Force, demonstrates the commitment of Maryland’s law enforcement agencies to protect consumers from fraud and help to ensure the integrity of the mortgage market and other credit markets. Information about mortgage fraud prosecutions is available on the internet at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Mortgage-Fraud/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office - Economic Crimes Unit, and the U.S. Secret Service for their investigative work and assistance. Mr. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorney Kwame J. Manley, who prosecuted the case.