Former Norwalker Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Feds

Gari-Mark Thomas, formerly of Norwalk, pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to conspiring to defraud the Federal Housing Authority

A former Norwalk man pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to a mortgage fraud scheme to defraud the Federal Housing Authority.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Connecticut issued this news release at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday:

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Gari-Mark Thomas, 38, of Michigan, formerly of Norwalk, waived his right to indictment and pleaded guilty today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas P. Smith in Hartford to one count of conspiracy to defraud the Federal Housing Authority through a mortgage fraud scheme.

According to court documents and statements made in court, in March 2008, Thomas, while serving as a loan officer for Suntrust Mortgage, assisted his girlfriend in obtaining a residential real estate loan to purchase a property at 510 E. Main Street in Stratford by submitting fraudulent information to the lender and the Federal Housing Authority (FHA). 

The fraudulent information included a false claim that his girlfriend was employed with a tax and accounting company, false pay stubs, false IRS tax forms and phony bank statements to make it appear that she had a bank account with assets in it, when in fact she had no such assets.

Based on the fraudulent loan documentation, the loan was issued by the lender and insured by the FHA.  Thomas’ girlfriend ultimately defaulted on the loan, causing a loss of approximately $184,000 to the FHA.

Thomas is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant on April 23, 2014, at which time Thomas faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five years.

This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric J. Glover.


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