Six months into this mess, I've almost forgotten what's at the center of this tale of mortgage fraud. Does everyone remember the home that's at the heart of this mess? Let's go back for a moment to the home located at 3390 Oak Avenue, Coconut Grove, Florida. This was the home that was the vehicle for the fraud orchestrated by John Romney which involved straw buyer Bernardo Barrera who later claimed that his identity was stolen for the purposes of defrauding the lender, Citi Mortgage. The players involved in this scheme were John Romney, Michael Martinez and Delaila Estefano. Mr. Romney had purchased the home in question just weeks before the sale to Mr. Barrera which netted Mr. Romney a near $370,000 profit. Mr. Martinez was the man who lent the down payment required to close the transaction, that leaves Estefano who was the attorney who closed the transaction.
Any idiot can figure out Mr. Romney's place in this scheme, he found a house on the cheap, got it fraudulently appraised (UH HELLO? Where's the appraiser in all this Mr. Kostrzewski?), then sold it to a straw buyer at a six figure profit. Now, lets take a look at Michael Martinez, who exactly did he lend the $125,000 to? This was the money required for a down payment in order for the transaction to close, so isn't it logical that the money was lent to the straw buyer, Bernardo Barrera or at the very least the man who the state alleges posed as Mr. Barrera? I don't get it folks. Let's now move on to the attorney, this is where I have a real issue. If the attorney who conducted the transaction was on the take, why do you need Mr. Martinez to lend the straw buyer the down payment needed to close the transaction? I mean, if I was running the scam and had the attorney in my pocket, I'd have the attorney tell the bank the down payment was already there and save myself the trouble of dealing with Mr. Martinez and having to give him a $10,000 share of my ill gotten gains! Does the involvement of Mr. Martinez get your bull$hit meter going?
Something doesn't add up here. We've already established how much each one of the co defendants made off of this transaction, taking those amounts into consideration, this mess makes even less sense.
For our readers jonesing for Roger Besu news, bear with me, it's coming!