Title Company Owner Arrested on Mortgage Fraud and Money Laundering Charges
Was a Fugitive for Almost a Year
|U.S. Attorney’s Office February 16, 2010|
BALTIMORE, MD—Daniel E. Fink Jr., age 43, of Baltimore, who owned and operated Homemaxx Title & Escrow LLC (Homemaxx), a title company that conducted residential real estate closings with offices in Middle River and Parkville, Maryland, was arrested in Palm Beach, Florida yesterday and had his initial appearance in federal court in Florida this morning. Fink was a fugitive since March 26, 2009 when a federal grand jury in Baltimore returned an indictment charging him with wire fraud and money laundering in connection with a scheme to defraud lenders and homeowners of over $500,000.
The arrest was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
According to the five count superseding indictment, from February 2003 to July 2004, Fink caused Homemaxx to fail to pay outstanding first mortgages on real estate transactions or to record deeds in the real estate records of local and state governments. Fink allegedly transferred substantial amounts of money from a Homemaxx escrow account into other Homemaxx accounts, as well as to accounts not associated with Homemaxx, and used the money intended to be disbursed pursuant to real estate closing documents for personal expenditures unrelated to real estate transactions. In connection with a particular real estate refinancing transaction by one of his customers, Fink allegedly diverted funds from the escrow account and then used the proceeds to purchase a new 2004 CLK Mercedes. As a result of this scheme, Fink is alleged to have defrauded lenders and homeowners of more than $500,000, and to have used $93,228 of the criminal proceeds for money laundering. The indictment seeks the forfeiture of $593,228.
Fink faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each of the three counts of wire fraud; and 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine for each of two counts of money laundering.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
The Maryland Mortgage Fraud Task Force was established to unify the agencies that regulate and investigate mortgage fraud and promote the early detection, identification, prevention and prosecution of mortgage fraud schemes. This case, as well as other cases brought by members of the Task Force, demonstrates the commitment of law enforcement agencies to protect consumers from fraud and promote the integrity of the credit markets. Information about mortgage fraud prosecutions is available at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Mortgage- Fraud/index.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Florida for their assistance in the arrest and prosecution, and thanked Assistant United States Attorney Harry Gruber, who is prosecuting the case.