A New York man was sentenced to 2 to 6 years in prison Monday for stealing more than $3 million in a mortgage fraud scheme, officials said.

Sam Hilany of West Hempstead, N.Y. was sentenced Oct. 3 by Nassau County Court Judge Jerald Carter. Hilany pled guilty in July to attempted grand larceny in the first degree, a felony and a scheme to defraud in the first degree, according to Nassau County District Attorney Denis Dillon.

Hilany has waived his right to appeal and is required to make full restitution in the amount of $3,136,800, Dillon said Tuesday.

Hilany was the principal architect behind a large identity theft and mortgage fraud scheme, Dillon said.

The scheme included real estate investors, an attorney, a title closer and an appraiser, Dillon said.

“This elaborate identity theft and mortgage fraud scheme involved stolen identities, paid ‘straw borrowers,’ falsified employment, income and asset information, and false property appraisals,” Dillon said.

In one incident, by erecting a street-level facade at the site of a structure that had been destroyed by fire, the defendants were able to obtain a $324,000 mortgage on a building that was merely a burnt-out shell, Dillon said.

Hilany was both the purchaser and seller of most of the properties in that scheme, and he was the principal beneficiary of the proceeds from these transactions, according to Dillon.

The companies in whose names the properties were bought and sold were in fact corporate names used by Hilany, Dillon said. Hilany found the properties, did the contracts, arranged for the falsified appraisals, and set up the closing dates, according to Dillon.

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Send tips or a Letter to the Editor to janis@inman.com or call (510) 658-9252, ext. 140.

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