Plea deal in Florida mortgage robo-signing

Published On: Nov 21 2012 08:02:56 AM EST
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

A former executive of Lender Processing Services Inc. (LPS) -- a publicly traded company based in Jacksonville -- pleaded guilty Tuesday, admitting her participation in a six-year scheme to prepare and file more than 1 million fraudulently signed and notarized mortgage-related documents with property recorders’ offices throughout the United States.

Lorraine Brown, 56, of Alpharetta, Ga., pleaded guilty to to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Prosecutors said workers who weren't authorized to sign mortgage-related documents forged and falsified signatures, at the direction of Brown and others.

More than a million fraudulently signed and notarized documents were filed with property recorders nationwide between 2003 and 2009, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Lorraine Brown participated in a scheme to fabricate mortgage-related documents at the height of the financial crisis,” said Assistant Attorney General Breuer. “She was responsible for more than a million fraudulent documents entering the system, directing company employees to forge and falsify documents relied on by property recorders, title insurers and others. Appropriately, she now faces the prospect of prison time.”

Brown faces a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, or twice the gross gain or loss from the crime. The date for sentencing has not yet been set.

Her attorney, Mark Rosenblum, said Tuesday in a statement that negotiating a legal settlement will allow Brown to begin moving on with her life.

"Lori didn't expect to be in this position. But now that she is, she's facing it with grace and dignity," Rosenblum said. "Without doubt, this is a difficult day for Lori, but it's also a good day."