Industry News

Title insurance fraud costs man $2 million, prison time

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A Michigan businessman and former chiropractor will spend 33 1/2 months in federal prison and must pay restitution of nearly $2 million to a title insurance company he defrauded in early 2002, in part so he could buy an Arena Football League team in Florida, The Flint Journal reported Wednesday. "Frankly, I think your conduct was deplorable," U.S. District Judge Paul V. Gadola said Tuesday as he sentenced Thom D. Hopper, 57, formerly of Fenton Township, to the prison term and to make restitution of more than $1.8 million, the Journal reported. "I put things in the wrong order," Hopper reportedly said before he was sentenced. "I never intended to steal." Hopper, a Flint, Mich., native, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud last April 14 but asked for time to be able to begin making restitution to the Commonwealth Land Title Insurance Co. in Livonia, Mich., reports said. He was charged by U.S. attorneys in December 2004 but made his plea and never went to trial, according to repo...