Mortgage fraud ‘KREW’ defendants expected to plead guilty today and tomorrow

IRS 1040 Tax Form Being Filled Out
Credit: Metro file photo

Change of plea hearings are scheduled today and tomorrow for defendants charged a year ago with accruing more than $20 million in proceeds on fraudulent loans for 100 Philadelphia properties.

Defendant Eric Sijohn Brown was scheduled for a change of plea hearing today in Philadelphia federal court and was expected to change his plea to guilty on charges of conspiracy to commit loan and wire fraud for his role in operating KREW Settlement Services, a Philadelphia real estate settlement company.

Codefendants Roderick L. Foxworth, Sr., of Philadelphia, and Kevin Joseph Franklin, of Albany, Ga., are scheduled to change their pleas tomorrow and are expected to plead guilty.

These defendants, along with Cynthia Evette Brown, of Philadelphia, and Walter Alston Brown, Jr., of Glen Allen, Va., were all indicted in April 2013 for allegedly operating a mortgage fraud scheme between May 2004 and February 2009 that reportedly involved fraudulent documents including inflated purchase prices on loan documents for more than 100 Philadelphia properties.

Brown, a general contractor, allegedly identified distressed properties to purchas, most of which were in West Philadelphia.

Foxworth and Brown Jr. were mortgage brokers who would use the names of straw buyers to submit false applications for loans on these properties to lenders, obtaining the fraudulent loans.

Cynthia Brown and Walter Brown are still listed for a jury trial starting in May and it was not immediately clear if they had pleaded guilty before.

All defendants could face significant prison terms.

The government is also seeking restitution of more than $13 million.

IRS Criminal Investigation division worked on this case.



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