Guilty pleas in mortgage fraud case

SEATTLE — The U.S. attorney’s office says a Washington state man has pleaded guilty in federal court to lying on federal loan applications and conspiracy to submit fraudulent applications.

The News Tribune reported that Emiel Kandi, of University Place, has agreed to pay more than $830,000 in restitution to the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Federal prosecutors announced his pleas Monday. They will recommend a sentence of 6 1/2 years when he’s sentenced in September.

A grand jury indicted Kandi in June. Prosecutors say he submitted false information on at least 19 home mortgage loan applications in 2008 and 2009 for properties in Gig Harbor, Puyallup, Roy, Kent and Vancouver, Wash. Insured through the federal government, prosecutors say the loans were designed to let Kandi cash out of properties, seize a borrower’s home and sometimes sell it quickly for a profit.

The U.S. attorney’s office says Kandi charged interest rates as high as 45 percent.

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