Utah Man Pleads Guilty To $2M Mortgage Scam

CHARLESTON, W.V. (AP) - A Utah man has pleaded guilty to federal charges in a multimillion-dollar mortgage fraud scheme involving a Hurricane subdivision called Stonegate.

Thirty-seven-year-old Michael Hurd of Salt Lake City appeared Thursday in Charleston before U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston.

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin says Hurd pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud.

He also pleaded guilty to mail fraud for his involvement in a similar scheme in Modesto, Calif.

Hurd admitted operating what he called a seller-funded down payment assistance program.

Prosecutors say it was an elaborate scheme to defraud lenders by concealing the transfer of loan funds.

In all, it cost victims in West Virginia almost $2 million.

Hurd faces up to 60 years in prison and a $2 million fine when sentenced Feb. 29, 2012.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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