CLEVELAND - A former FBI informant convicted in a mortgage fraud scheme has been indicted on charges of running a similar scam.
Paul Tomko, 39, faces eight counts, including wire fraud and conspiracy, the U.S. attorney's office said. The charges are similar to scams that agents had paid him to help investigate in 2007 and 2008.
Tomko told The Plain Dealer that he had done nothing wrong. "I have no idea what they're talking about," he said. "We certainly plan to fight this."
No phone listing could be found for Tomko. The Associated Press left a message Friday for his attorney.
In 2009, Tomko pleaded guilty to fraud involving mortgage loans totaling nearly $1.2 million.
The latest indictment alleges that a probation officer contacted Tomko at his Middleburg Heights home on Nov. 9, 2009, and noticed that a company called The Mortgage House was operating out of the residence.
When the officer questioned him, the indictment states, Tomko said the company was an undercover operation linked to his informant work and the FBI was aware of its existence. But Tomko had lied, according to the indictment, and the FBI was unaware of the business.
Tomko was also running another company, OKMOT Real Estate Co., according to the indictment. The charges state that Tomko recruited his housekeeper to apply for fraudulent mortgage loans totaling more than $428,000 for two properties in Cleveland, and other homes in Lakewood and Lorain. The applications falsely inflated income and assets.
The housekeeper was not charged.
After the transactions closed, Tomko pocketed about $100,000 of the proceeds by filing liens for work not performed, the indictment said.
The FBI paid Tomko a total of $27,000 in 2007 and 2008 to assist agents in other mortgage fraud investigations, according to a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office.
The cases that Tomko had worked remain solid and should not be affected by the new indictment, said assistant U.S. Attorney Christian Stickan.
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