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Continued: Broker pleads guilty in equity-skimming case

  • Article by: DAN BROWNING , Star Tribune
  • Last update: October 2, 2007 - 8:44 PM

The indictment charged Fiorito and Jerde with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and four counts of mail fraud from January 2004 to March 2007.

Fiorito admitted to helping a woman refinance a home in Mound in July 2005 and promising to help her restore her credit profile and sell the house, which was owned by the woman's mother. Fiorito confirmed that he suspected the mother's signature had been forged on a power-of-attorney document that enabled the refinancing to go forward, but never alerted the lender. Fiorito said the owner was unaware of the refinancing.

Fiorito collected between $12,000 and $13,000 from the refinancing, but admitted that he never sold the house or repaired the credit as promised.

MacLaughlin said Fiorito could face 140 to 175 months in prison and have to pay restitution.

Bill Lannon, an investigator with the Duluth Police Department and a member of the Minnesota Financial Crimes Task Force, said earlier that more indictments might flow from the investigation, which uncovered about 15 victims and losses of about $400,000.

Dan Browning • 612-673-4493

Dan Browning • dbrowning@startribune.com

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