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Wednesday, May 22, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Mom & Son Fraudsters Sent to Jail

SAN DIEGO (CN) - A federal judge on Wednesday sent a Carlsbad real estate agent and her attorney son to jail to await sentencing after a jury convicted them of an $8 million mortgage fraud, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

The jury on Wednesday convicted Aida Agusti Castro, 67, and her son, Stephen Kenneth Chrysler, 46, of Orange County, of multiple counts of wire fraud involving 16 homes in Oceanside, Escondido, San Marcos and two other Southern California towns.

U.S. District Judger Jeffrey Miller sent to mother and son to jail to await their sentencing, on July 30.

Chrysler was owner and CEO of SKC Real Estate in Carlsbad, a wealthy suburb north of San Diego, and his mother, a licensed real estate agent, worked for and was an officer of SKC, prosecutors said in a statement.

According to the U.S. attorney's statement: "Evidence at trial proved that between 2005 and 2007, the two defendants created 30 separate false loan applications, along with other fraudulent supporting documents, that they submitted to mortgage lenders in order to obtain over $8 million in mortgages to unqualified borrowers, including:

"creating phony businesses and claiming that borrowers were the self-employed owners of those companies;

"inflating borrowers' monthly incomes;

"creating false rental histories and citing a sham management company as the landlord;

"fabricating rental agreements, with made-up tenants and lease terms, and forging borrowers' signatures on the agreements;

"altering borrowers' bank statements to show higher bank account balances; and

"purchasing false CPA letters that would support the borrowers' phony businesses.

"Documents introduced into evidence proved that through SKC Real Estate, the defendants received approximately $350,000 in loan fees and real estate commissions from these fraudulent transactions."

The mother and son face up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines for each of five counts of wire fraud, prosecutors said.

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