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Mortgage fraud in Slavic Village
Final defendants sentenced

Kabir Bhatia

Two Northeast Ohio residents were sentenced Thursday for their parts in a massive mortgage fraud case that ate through wide swaths of Cleveland's Slavic Village.

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Cuyahoga County prosecutors say 48-year-old Pak Yan Lui of Independence was the deal maker in more than 5 million dollars in bogus mortgages on scores of Slavic Village homes. He’s pleaded guilty to 11 counts of mortgage fraud and received 2 years in prison.

Lui steered the phony sales of 61 homes through straw buyers and sellers. His co-defendant, Robin Boyd, of Cleveland, prepared phony tax and loan documents for the sales. She, too, pleaded guilty and got 3 years.

Mark Kellogg was sentenced May 19 to 14 years for his part in the Slavic Village scheme. He was ordered to pay restitution of more than 5 million dollars to lenders and neighbors who sold properties nearby. His plea included the admission that the sales harmed not only the banks that made loans, but other homeowners who remained in Slavic Village.

Ward 12 Councilman Tony Brancatelli says Lui chose to go a different route.

“(BRANCATELLI)…He basically, after the sentencing, was saying there were no victims. And from a classic sense, there were no victims as an armed robbery or an assault. But there certainly was a victim in the neighborhood which was the loss of these foreclosures and demolitions of the properties and devaluation of the neighborhood because of the fraud that was committed…”

The councilman added he looks forward to working with residents to restore or demolish the vacant homes.

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