The Kings County District Attorney’s office investigation into mortgage fraud may not have hit your home, but it may have hit your neighbors’.
Prosecutors said that homes in East Flatbush and Canarsie were among seven addresses at the heart of over a halfâˆ’dozen indictments filed by the D.A.’s new Mortgage Fraud and Real Estate Crimes Unit.
Kings County District Attorney Charles Hynes hailed the success of the unit Monday with Brooklyn U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, who had secured the $875,000 in funding to create the new unit.
“This Mortgage Fraud and Real Estate Crimes Unit at the Brooklyn DA’s Office has proved to be the perfect tool to prevent scam artists from preying on Brooklyn residents during the ongoing economic and housing crises,” Schumer said. “For years, these criminals have taken advantage of New Yorkers and escaped undetected and unscathed.”
Hynes said that since it’s opening in March, Assistant District Attorney’s assigned to the unit have indicted eight people on a slew of charges ranging from grand larceny to filing a false instrument. An additional 80 investigations have been opened, Hynes said, adding that the unit was instrumental in the arrest of Thomas Prusikâˆ’Parkin, who was accused of impersonating his deceased mother in a hareâˆ’brained scam to pull his Park Slope home out of foreclosure, as well as collect Social Security benefits and rent subsidies.
“Factors have created a perfect storm for mortgage fraud and real estate crime,” Hynes explained. “The pool of potential victims is huge in this densely populated borough, and the desperation of homeowners facing default and foreclosure has made them easy targets for real estate scammers.”
“The new Mortgage Fraud and Real Estate Crimes Unit in my office has made a full time job of fighting this crime,” he said.
Those indicted include Chandra Myers, who was accused of stealing a property on Lenox Road near East 46th Street.
Myers allegedly forged the deed to the property and then filed the deed, officials allege. She then forged paperwork that would give her the power of attorney over the property and used the documents to steal an additional $25,000 from the true owner of the home.
Myers was charged with grand larceny and criminal possession of forged instruments.
Also indicted was Eli Manor, who tricked a Canarsie homeowner into deeding an East 85th Street home near Avenue J to his holding company while pretending to work out a loan modification for him.
Other mortgage fraud cases were found in Williamsburg, Bushwick and Sunset Park, officials said.
Anyone wishing to report real estate or mortgage fraud can call the D.A.’s office at (718) 250âˆ’2311.