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Appraiser get 17 years behind bars

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H. Robert Murray III

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Hello,
Just in case you missed, it seems one appraiser is gettin his due in the Federal Pen. This was in the Houston Chronicle 08/24/2002.

Something to think about, isn't it.



Appraiser sentenced to 17 years in scheme
A former real estate appraiser was sentenced Friday to serve 210 months (more than 17 years) in prison for his part in a scheme orchestrated by three Houston brothers who bilked local banks out of $45 million.

U.S. District Judge Lee H. Rosenthal ordered Joe Bob Moncrief into custody. He was convicted in August 2001 of 18 counts of bank fraud, wire fraud and money laundering stemming from his false statements on real estate forms to inflate home values.

The brothers, acting in the names of straw borrowers, from 1996 to 2000 got loans on homes assessed far in excess of their actual value. They pleaded guilty to money laundering, and Frank Mei was sentenced this month to 78 months, Kevin Mei to 97 months and Daniel Mei to 63 months. Rosenthal ordered them to pay $3.4 million in restitution to the banks.

Frank Mei Sr. received a 14-month term and $6,000 fine for failing to report his sons' scheme. Thirty others have been sentenced for mail or bank fraud. Four await sentencing.
 

George Hatch

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
This is a perfect example of why appraisers shouldn't even consider participating in these schemes. The guys who made all the money ($45Million??!) got from 5 to 9. The appraiser, who probably didn't make but his normal fees, got twice as long as any of them. There's no way he could have made enough money off of this to justify the risk he was running. Don't ask me if I feel sorry for him.

Clients put the push on appraisers to play ball and then try to sweeten the bait by telling the appraiser that the borrower has 'gold' credit and will never walk away. But you know when the deal falls apart and the borrower walks that the client is going to point his finger at the appraiser and say "I had no idea that property was worth less than the appraisal. I've been lied to and used, and I'm a victim, too. This bad appraiser over here did it. Get him."

Sad to say, but our clients will never back us up when things get hot; long term business relationship or no. The appraiser who thinks otherwise must be high. We need to protect ourselves. Think long term, not where the next fee is going to come from. I like appraising and I need my business. But I don't love it enough to go to jail for it if that's the alternative.

George Hatch
 

Jim Bartley

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
Joe Bob should change his name to Dumb Bob.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Didn't he once post to this forum????
 
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