Men Sentenced for Roles in Mortgage Fraud
SACRAMENTO, CA- United States District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller sentenced two defendants today in two related cases for mail fraud involving the purchase and sale of 24 Sacramento-area homes in 2007 and 2008, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
Vadim Vilchitsa, 32, of Sacramento, was sentenced to 15 months in prison, and Yevgeniy Y. Zazhitskiy, 39, of North Highlands, was sentenced to 20 months in prison. Restitution will be set at a hearing on January 29, 2014.
According to court documents, in and before 2007 Vilchitsa and a business partner, solicited funds from investors to buy residential properties, renovate them, and flip them. They operated successfully prior to the financial crisis, but when real estate values plummeted, the business was unable to sell its inventory of homes. Vilchitsa and Azarov convinced their investors to purchase the inventory of properties at inflated prices and used the excess funds as working capital to continue their business. Vilchitsa and Azarov coordinated the purchases of 24 of their or their company's residential properties, although they knew the purchasing investors did not have the income or assets to support the loans for the properties. To effect this plan, loans were obtained for the investors through Zazhitskiy, a licensed real estate agent and broker who worked as a loan officer. Although he knew he had not interviewed the loan applicants, and he knew the loan applicants' income and assets were faked for purposes of the loan applications, he nonetheless obtained the loans for 23 of the 24 properties involved.
These cases were the product of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation and Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys S. Robert Tice-Raskin and Jean M. Hobler prosecuted the related cases.
Zhazhitskiy was ordered to begin serving his sentence on January 15, 2014, and Vilchitsa was ordered to begin serving his sentence on March 14, 2014.