LAS VEGAS (KXNT) – Two men made their initial appearances Thursday in federal court for bank fraud charges arising from a real estate scheme, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Steve W. Myhre for the District of Nevada.
42 year old Dustin M. Lewis, of Henderson, and 49 year old Brian Sorensen of Las Vegas, were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one count of bank fraud. If convicted, Lewis and Sorenson each face a statutory maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and up to a $1,000,000 fine.
According to allegations made in the indictment, from about August 15, 2011 to about January 17, 2014, Lewis and Sorensen conspired with each other to defraud OneWest Bank. The defendants allegedly devised and executed a scheme to avoid foreclosure so that Lewis could retain ownership of a 5,331 square foot, five-bedroom Henderson home. As part of the scheme, Lewis submitted a fraudulent short sale application to the bank, which induced the bank to allow Lewis to sell the property to Sorensen’s family member for much less than Lewis owed under the existing mortgage loan.
It’s also alleged that Lewis didn’t disclose that he and Sorensen agreed that Lewis would continue to reside at the property and Sorensen would later cause the property to be sold back to Lewis free of the bank’s mortgage loan. It’s further alleged that on or about July 21, 2017, Lewis then listed the property for sale at a price of $1,195,000.
The case is being investigated by the FBI, the IRS-Criminal Investigation, with assistance from the U.S. Department of Interior-Office of the Inspector General. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Burns.