December 19, 2012 - 6:09 pm
A Las Vegas real estate agent was sentenced Wednesday to 70 months in federal prison for her role in a $10 million mortgage fraud scheme.
Linda Marie Kot, 58, also was sentenced to five years of supervised release after she gets out of prison and ordered to forfeit $3.9 million, the Justice Department announced.
In May, after a five-day trial, a federal jury convicted Kot of three counts of bank fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit mail, wire and bank fraud.
Federal prosecutors alleged that Kot participated in a scheme with members of an investment group to submit fraudulent loan documents to lenders.
The scheme, which took place in 2006, involved the use of “straw buyers,” people with good credit scores whose names were put on the properties but who were not intended to be responsible for the payment of the mortgages, prosecutors alleged.
Kot and her co-conspirators caused material misstatements to be placed on loan applications, including information about the true owners and controllers of the properties, according to court documents and the trial evidence.
In some cases, prosecutors said, Kot put straw buyers on her bank account to make it appear that the straw buyers had enough assets to qualify for mortgage loans.
Prosecutors said Kot made more than $276,000 in commissions on the fraudulent sales.
Three co-conspirators, Hugo Coutelin, Jeff Thomas and Michael Perry, previously pleaded guilty for their roles in the scheme, prosecutors said.
In September, Coutelin and Perry were sentenced to 15 months in prison, and Thomas was sentenced to time served.
The FBI investigated the case.
Trial attorneys with the Justice Department’s Fraud Section in Washington, D.C. handled the prosecution, with assistance from the Nevada U.S. attorney’s office.