NEWARK, NJ – A man in Bergen County, New Jersey was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for his role in a multi-year program to defraud financial and other institutions, said Rahul Agarwal, attorney for the United States in this case.
Steve Young Kang, aka “Steven Young Kang” and “Young Tae Kang”, 66, of Ridgefield, New Jersey, had previously pleaded guilty before US District Judge William J. Martini for information accusing him of a criminal charge. of bank fraud and one count. wire fraud. Judge Martini handed down the sentence today in Federal Court in Newark.
According to the documents filed in this case and the statements made in court:
Kang and others have fraudulently instigated mortgage lenders into “short sale” transactions, in which typically a financial institution agrees to allow a financially troubled homeowner to sell their home for less than that. that the owner owes on the mortgage. Such transactions are called short sales because the market value of the home is less than the amount owed by the owner and the lender agrees to accept a “short” payment of the amount owed by the owner.
From June 2013 to January 2017, Kang, who owned and controlled two real estate brokerage firms, sold his own properties and recruited others to sell properties in fraudulent short sales to a co-inspirer, Mehdi Kassai. The conspirators convinced the financial institutions to accept short sales and accept less than the value of the properties through false documents, straw buyers and cosmetic damage to the properties. Kang, as a listing broker, also prevented legitimate and higher bids from being made by artificially limiting the ability of others to bid and buy properties. Kassai then sold the properties to third parties for a substantial profit. Kang defrauded financial and other institutions of at least $ 2.7 million.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Martini sentenced Kang to three years of supervised release and ordered him to give up $ 835,248 in proceeds from the program. The return will be determined at a later date.
United States Attorney Agarwal credited the Special Agents of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Office of the Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Robert Manchak, Special Agents of the United States Department of Homeland Security Investigations, led by Special Agent Charge Jason J. Molina and the Bergen County District Attorney’s Office, led by District Attorney Mark Musella, with the investigation leading to today’s conviction .
The government is represented by Special Assistant United States Attorneys Charlie L. Divine and Kevin V. Di Gregory of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Office of the Inspector General.