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AHH 24-Hr. News

IMAGE Teachers Show Their Stuff This Month at the Art Alliance
Sunday, 28 December 2014
IMAGE: "Blue Furry Cacti on Pink and White Marbled Mountain," a gouache painting by Shaden Mousa, a teacher at Brookdale Community College. Mousa will be among the exhibitors at the Art Alliance January Invitational Show, Jan. 10-31. RED BANK, NJ -... Read More...
IMAGE Foundation for the Red Bank Public Library Receives $5000 Grant from Wells Fargo
Sunday, 28 December 2014
PHOTO:  (L-R)  Beth Hanratty, President of the Foundation for the Red Bank Public Library, Loredana Nadasan, Assistant Vice President (Wells Fargo, Red Bank), Susan Modri-Smith, Vice President & District Manager (Wells Fargo, Central Jersey... Read More...
Application Deadline Approaches for U.S. High School Students Seeking YES Abroad Scholarships
Sunday, 28 December 2014
New York, NY — The application deadline for the 2015-2016 Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Abroad scholarship program is January 7, 2015. The program provides full scholarships to American high school students to experience overseas... Read More...
IMAGE Highlands Police Report - December 27, 2014
Saturday, 27 December 2014
HIGHLANDS, NJ - The following police report is provided by the Highlands Police Department.  All subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 11/01/14 1:09AM Brian K. Krytofik 39 Highlands was arrested outside Windansea for... Read More...
Middletown to Help Connect Residents with Faith-Based Initiatives
Saturday, 27 December 2014
MIDDLETOWN, NJ - The Middletown Township Committee has made a commitment to directly connect residents in need with local charitable organizations that can lend a helping hand. They cemented that commitment with a resolution adopted at the December... Read More...

Columns

IMAGE Review - Penguins of Madagascar
by David Prown
Sunday, 28 December 2014
I don't go to kids movies to often, but my grandson is 3 1/2 and wanted to get out of the house. "Penguins of Madagascar" is rated PG (though I... Read More...
IMAGE Proxy Visits
by George Hancock-Stefan
Saturday, 27 December 2014
In the Christmas carol, “We Three Kings of Orient Are”, we are told of the long and perilous journey the Magi undertook in order to come and... Read More...
IMAGE Skewed View - December 27, 2014
by Tom Brennan
Saturday, 27 December 2014
Want to know how to win $1M in a Pillsbury Bake-Off?  Use 4 ingredients: http://huff.to/16H6ewk If you’re hungry don't click on this 3-burger... Read More...
IMAGE Wife Tells of Husband's ALS Struggles
by Daniel J. Vance
Saturday, 27 December 2014
Recently, I featured Todd Neva of Hancock, Michigan, who has been battling amyotropic lateral sclerosis (or ALS, also called Lou Gehrig's disease)... Read More...
IMAGE Review - The Imitation Game
by David Prown
Saturday, 27 December 2014
It is almost a rite of passage to go to see a new release movie on Christmas Day. If you asked me 4 weeks ago, it seemed like there was going to be... Read More...

Upcoming Events

NEWARK, NJ —A Middlesex County, New Jersey man today admitted his part in a phony foreclosure rescue scheme that was part of a $4.4 million mortgage fraud, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Frederick “Freddie” Grippo, 32, of Old Bridge, New Jersey, formerly a loan officer at Worldwide Financial Resources and an officer of Vanick Holdings, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty in Newark federal court to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Between January 2008 and February 2010, a co-conspirator of Grippo was the president of Morgan Financial Equity Shares and Vanick Holdings, both based in Holmdel, New Jersey. Morgan Financial was held out to the public as a company that could help homeowners in financial distress who faced foreclosure on their homes through something called the “Equity Share Program.” As described by Morgan Financial and its president, the Equity Share Program involved creating a limited liability company in the name of the homeowner’s house in which the homeowner would supposedly own a 90 percent interest, with the rest to be owned by one or two private investors.

In reality, the so-called investors invested nothing and were instead straw buyers recruited by Grippo or his co-conspirator because they had good credit. Grippo and his associates then made out mortgage loan applications in the names of the phony investors for the purchase of the distressed properties. A homeowner in distress would come to a closing at the Morgan Financial office in Holmdel at which he or she would be given a stack of documents to sign that the homeowner thought would prevent foreclosure, but which actually transferred title to the investor. The new mortgage loan applications filled out in the name of the investor by Grippo or his associates contained materially false information about the loan applicant’s monthly income, his assets, and whether the residence to be “bought” would be his primary residence.

Once the new loan application was filled out, it would be submitted to Worldwide Financial Resources for processing, and Grippo, a loan officer at Worldwide, would see to it that the loan was approved. Once the loan was approved and the loan money was wired to the settlement agent for a given transaction, Grippo’s co-conspirator would direct the settlement agent to forward a portion of those loan proceeds to bank accounts that the co-conspirator controlled.

The scheme succeeded in obtaining $4.4 million in mortgage loans. Properties whose original owners fell victim to the Equity Share Program are located throughout the metropolitan area, including in Rutherford, New Jersey; Monroe, New Jersey; and Brooklyn, New York.

The conspiracy charge to which Grippo pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of 30 years in prison and a maximum fine of $1,000,000. Sentencing is scheduled for March 6. 2013.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents from the FBI’s Red Bank Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael B. Ward in Newark; and special agents from IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Shantelle P. Kitchen, for the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Bohdan Vitvitsky of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit in Newark.