Showing posts with label HUD. Show all posts
Showing posts with label HUD. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

“Extreme” greed gets Newport Beach man 5 years

A Newport Coast man who committed mortgage fraud and filed for bankruptcy without telling authorities he bought 2 Ferraris and a Lamborghini was sentenced to 5 years in federal prison Monday.

Lorenzo Espinoza, 43, also was ordered to pay the Department of Housing and Urban Development restitution of more than $614,000.

In sentencing him, United States District Judge Stephen V. Wilson said Espinoza demonstrated  “extreme greed.”

Espinoza pleaded guilty in 2006 to conspiracy to defraud HUD, bankruptcy fraud, money laundering and failing to pay federal taxes. Prosecutors said he didn’t pay them for more than a decade and owed more than $5 million in taxes, interest and penalties.

Here’s how the U.S. Attorney’s office described the crimes:

  • Espinoza and his associates fraudulently purchased nearly 100 residential properties.
  • The properties were sold at inflated market values to straw buyers. Espinoza and his associates made the down payments and in some cases submitted bogus tax forms and paycheck stubs with the loan applications.
  • When the straw buyers defaulted on the home loans and the lenders foreclosed, HUD reimbursed the lenders for their costs. HUD’s losses came to $2 million when it sold the homes for much less than the fraudulent purchase prices.

The news release stated:

“In addition to defrauding lenders and HUD, Espinoza committed bankruptcy fraud in 1999 when he filed for bankruptcy and failed to tell the United States Trustee that he owned a Rolex Daytona watch, two Ferraris and a Lamborghini. In late 2002, Espinoza laundered the proceeds of his bankruptcy fraud when he sold the Ferrari automobiles for $127,500.

“Espinoza also pleaded guilty to willfully failing to pay income tax, admitting that he did not pay $199,053 due for the 1996 tax year. In court papers filed in relation to the sentencing, prosecutors pointed out that Espinoza had not filed tax returns for well over 10 years and owes the Internal Revenue Service more than $5 million in taxes, interest and penalties.”


Posted via web from The Newport Beach Blog

Monday, April 5, 2010

Feds say rip Chinese drywall out of homes

A pair of federal agencies — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission — are telling homeowners to rip out Chinese-made drywall linked to corrosion of metal in their homes such as electrical components.

A HUD/CPSC release says drywall studies have shown “a connection between certain Chinese drywall and corrosion in homes’ and the federal authorities are “continuing to look at long term health and safety implications.” Chinese drywall emits caustic airborne compounds at a higher rate than U.S. made drywall. CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum: “Based on the scientific work to date, removing the problem drywall is the best solution currently available to homeowners.”

During the hosing boom of the previous decade, Chinese drywall was imported to meet surging demand for construction. It’s is believed that most of that imported drywall was used in Gulf States, particularly repairing hurricane damage, but that tainted drywall has been reported in most sections of the nation. Federal officials say no Chinese drywall was imported from the beginning of 2009.

The Associated Press reports:

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., said now the question is who pays to gut the homes. “The way I see it, homeowners didn’t cause this. The manufacturers in China did,” Nelson said. “That’s why we’ve got to go after the Chinese government now.”

Southern members of Congress have sought to make it easier to sue Chinese manufacturers and to get the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help homeowners pay for costs not covered by insurance. They also say the U.S. needs to pressure the Chinese government, which allegedly ran some of the companies that made defective drywall. About 2,100 homeowners have filed suit in federal court in New Orleans against Chinese manufacturers and U.S. companies that sold the drywall.

Consumer tips:

Posted via web from eWaste Disposal and Recycling

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

HUD Secretary Requests $41.6 Billion 2011 Budget. Five Goals in Focus

Stating that the nation's housing market has made significant progress toward stability during the past year, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun  Donovan presented the Department's 2011 budget request of $41.6 billion to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies.

The requested funds do not include a projected 6.9 billion in FHA and Ginnie Mae receipts and represents a 5 percent reduction from the $43.72 billion (net of FHA and Ginnie Mae funds) requested for Fiscal 2010.

Secretary Donovan said that the budget reduction confronted his department with difficult choices and it chose to prioritize core rental and community development programs; fully funding Section 8 Rental Assistance, the Public Housing Operating Fund, and Community Development Block Grants. 

Cuts will be made in funding for a number of programs including the public housing capital fund, HOME Investment Partnerships, Native American Housing Block Grants, the 2002 Supportive Housing Program for the Elderly, and the Section 811 Supportive Housing Program for Persons with Disabilities.  He said that in some instances these programs had received substantial funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), reducing the need for funds in the upcoming fiscal year...Read More;                     ....

Posted via web from The Newport Beach Lifestyle

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