Las Vegas Couple Face Federal Charges in Mortgage Fraud Case

LAS VEGAS (AP) - A Las Vegas real estate broker and her husband
are facing federal charges they made millions of dollars orchestrating a mortgage fraud scheme.

U.S. Attorney for Nevada Gregory Brower says Eve Mazzarella, 30, and her husband, Steven Grimm, 45, were indicted Wednesday on bank
fraud, money laundering and aiding and abetting charges.

Grimm was arrested Thursday in Las Vegas and is due to appear Friday in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas. Brower says Mazzarella is being sought.

If convicted, each could face decades in prison and millions of dollars in fines.

The government alleges Mazzarella and Grimm bought more than 200
properties at inflated values using limited liability companies and more than 400 straw buyers to make purchase offers.

The couple allegedly controlled transactions worth more than $100 million.

They allegedly defaulted on mortgage payments on many of the loans, causing at least 118 properties to be sold in foreclosure.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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