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Crime & Courts

U.S. attorney: Man pleads guilty in $20M mortgage schemes

TBO.com staff
Published:   |   Updated: May 9, 2013 at 07:43 PM

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The owner of several real estate companies has pleaded guilty in $20 million mortgage conspiracies involving the sales of Tampa and Temple Terrace condos, according to U.S. Attorney Robert E. O誰eill.

Oscar Torres, 47, of Weston faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison on each of the counts.

According to the plea agreement, the first conspiracy involved the sale of The Arbors at Carrollwood, a 390-unit condominium complex located at 3939 Ehrlich Road.

Torres and his co-conspirators tried to get lenders to approve millions of dollars in mortgage loans. To entice buyers, the conspirators offered unlawful cash payments to buyers, either before or after closing, O誰eill said. The conspirators also made false and fraudulent statements about the property痴 sale price and information about buyers.

As a result, mortgage lenders lost more than $15 million, O誰eill said.

The second conspiracy involved sales of condominium units at The Preserve at Temple Terrace, a 392-unit condominium complex located at 7735 Fletcher Ave.

Torres and his co-conspirators marketed the condo units at The Preserve with a series of 澱uyers incentives, but actually enticed buyers with unlawful cash payments. Conspirators again made false and fraudulent statements on various mortgage-related documents, and lenders lost approximately $5.6 million, O誰eill said.

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