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San Marino man sentenced in $9-million bank fraud scheme

April 23, 2012 |  3:27 pm

A San Marino businessman will serve just over 10 years in federal prison for orchestrating a scheme to defraud banks using straw borrowers with fake documents to obtain about $9 million in loans for homes and luxury cars, including Ferraris and Lamborghinis.

Scott Dority, 54, was sentenced last week to 121 months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge R. Gary Klausner at a sentencing hearing held under court seal, officials said Monday.

Dority pleaded guilty March 13 to wire fraud, conspiracy, aggravated identity theft and two counts of tax evasion. 

"In some incidents, the vehicles didn't exist or they disappear overseas," said Aaron May, assistant United States attorney.

The San Marino resident, along with others, recruited individuals with good credit to act as straw buyers to purchase residential homes or expensive vehicles.

Dority then created a package of materials -– including false bank statements, fake pay stubs and bogus  tax returns -- to persuade a lender that a buyer had sufficient assets and income to repay the loans, according to court documents.

The fake documents were then submitted to lenders who used them as the basis for more than $9 million in mortgage and vehicle loans.

As part of the scheme, Dority and his associates allegedly used the identity of a real appraiser to help get loans on properties in cities such as Lancaster and Pomona.

As part of his guilty plea, Dority acknowledged fraud involving $4 million in losses to financial institutions that issued mortgages and approximately $5 million in losses for sports cars and recreational vehicles.

Dority also admitted in court that he failed to file tax returns for 2005 and 2006, despite earning hundreds of thousands of dollars in income in each of those years. He must serve a mandatory two-year prison term for aggravated identity theft as part of his sentence.

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-- Richard Winton

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