A New Jersey attorney pleaded guilty to his role in a mortgage fraud scheme that bilked lenders out of $30 million.
The lawyer, Christopher Goodson, a Newark solo, pleaded guilty to one county of conspiracy to commit bank fraud before U.S. District Judge Katharine Hayden in Newark, according to a Sept 28 release from New Jersey U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito’s Office.
Goodson, 45, a Newark resident, faces up to 30 years in prison, according to the release.
The New Jersey judiciary lists Goodson as an active member of the bar, but efforts to reach him were unsuccessful.
His attorney, John Whipple of Whipple Azzarello in Morristown, didn’t return a call seeking comment.
Federal prosecutors said that from January 2011 through August 2017, Goodson, conspiring with a real estate agent and others, engaged in a short-sale mortgage fraud conspiracy targeting properties in jersey City, Clifton and Union that were in default.
In one case, the group is accused of causing a lender to sell a property to buyer participating in the conspiracy at a loss. In another case, they were accused of flipping the same target property from one buyer to another who obtained a mortgage using fake documents, leading to a much higher sale price.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office was not immediately available for comment.