A Santa Monica man has been sentenced to more than nine years in prison for an inter-state identity theft case and mortgage fraud case.

George French Jones, Jr., 50, was sentenced to 116 months by U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola in Miami, after previously pleading guilty to mail fraud and identity theft charges in connection with a mortgage fraud scheme involving two waterfront residential properties in Broward County, Florida.  He was also ordered to pay $1,824,581 in restitution.

According to court documents, Jones identified two properties in Broward County Florida owned by a pair of corporations. Jones had no connection to those corporations but he forged documents and then submitted bogus loan applications to a private lender in which he pretended to be the owners of the Fort Lauderdale properties.

Jones created a pair of Canadian passports, to impersonate the corporate owners. He also created fictitious business names closely resembling the names of the actual companies, established email accounts in the names of the corporate owners and corporate operating agreements.

As a result of this scheme, Jones defrauded the private lender out of approximately $1.7 million dollars.

In addition to jail time, Jones was ordered to return property and cash that resulted from the scam including the total $1.7 million traced from the fraud, a Chevy Suburban and an additional $631,504 seized by the government from various accounts associated with Jones.

U.S. Attorney Fajardo Orshan commended the investigative efforts of the FBI.  This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Browne. Assistant U.S. Attorney Nalina Sombuntham is handling the asset forfeiture aspects of the prosecution.

editor@smdp.com

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