Philadelphia Man Sentenced to 60 Months for Fraud Scheme Victimizing Homeowners
Zaki M. Bey, 39, of Philadelphia, PA, was sentenced to 60 months in prison, announced Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania Louis D. Lappen. Zaki Bey previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit loan and bank fraud, one count of conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service, and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
According to court documents, Bey conspired with others to prepare and submit fraudulent mortgage applications to banks and lending institutions. In 2007 and 2008, BEY successfully secured more than $2 million in residential loans on at least thirteen properties located in the Germantown section of Philadelphia and in New Jersey. Bey and others created fraudulent loan applications on behalf of straw buyers that contained materially false information as to the straw buyers’ income, assets, and intent to occupy the residences. Bey also furnished fraudulent records such as payroll account documents, paystubs, and financial statements to defraud financial institutions and lenders. Bey’s company at the time, Natural Home Builders, was able to receive a payout for purported construction expenses ranging from $17,864.26 to $60,000 at the closing of each settlement. Bey was not completing any construction on these properties, and obtained total settlement proceeds for construction costs of $435,074.26.
In late 2010 and early 2011, Bey filed fraudulent personal income tax returns for tax years 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. Bey filed these tax returns claiming false tax withholding payments and false Forms 1099-OID (“Original Issue Discount”) income for his company, Natural Home Builders. Bey attempted to receive total tax refunds from the IRS in the amount of $1,141,677. Bey was only successful in receiving $148,296 from the IRS based on the fraudulent 2009 tax return he submitted. After assessed a tax deficiency by the IRS, Bey mailed checks to the IRS from a closed bank account in an attempt to repay the fraudulent tax refund.
Beginning in 2010 to 2013, Bey engaged in a wire fraud conspiracy involving the submission of fraudulent auto loan applications. Bey furnished fraudulent records such as payroll account documents, paystubs and financial statements to defraud automobile dealerships located in Philadelphia and New Jersey. The false loan applications and fraudulent records caused the automobile dealerships to electronically submit false information to financial institutions and lenders. Through the use of straw buyers, Bey was able to obtain at least 7 automobiles.
In addition to Bey’s 60 month prison sentence, he will also be required to serve 3 years’ supervised release and pay back $705,528.22 in restitution to multiple financial institutions and the Internal Revenue Service.
This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney James Pavlock.