NY judge: Mortgage scammer to give lectures

AP News
Posted: Nov 19, 2009 2:33 PM

A Long Island woman convicted of acting as a "straw buyer" in a mortgage fraud scam has been ordered to give lectures on the perils of participating in such criminal schemes.

Rebecca Tharpe, Brentwood, was sentenced in Queens Criminal Court on Wednesday after being convicted of falsifying business records. She is to serve 30 days in jail and then five years probation, and was fined $2,500.

Justice Kenneth Holder also ordered that the woman speak at mortgage fraud forums while on probation. She will discuss the pitfalls of being a "straw buyer."

In Tharpe's case, prosecutors say she posed as the phony applicant for a mortgage on a property that had been stolen from a 93-year-old retiree. A co-conspirator was convicted of grand larceny in the case.