BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) Four more defendants are ready to enter guilty pleas in the long-running Crisp & Cole Real Estate fraud case.
Company principal Carl Cole is among the defendants set to enter pleas this week in federal court in Fresno, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. The case has 15 total defendants.
Former Bakersfield real estate moguls Cole and David Crisp were accused of scamming millions of dollars out of banks and mortgage companies between 2004 and 2007. They allegedly submitted fraudulent loan applications with material misrepresentations.
Cole is scheduled Thursday to plead guilty to conspiracy to commit mail, wire and bank fraud.
Cole's plea agreement calls for him to serve at least eight years in prison and forfeit nearly $30 million. The forfeiture amount is "a reasonable reflection of the amount that he obtained directly or indirectly as the result of the underlying criminal scheme and conspiracy ...," according to the plea agreement.
The U.S. Attorney's Office said Crisp and four others - Julie Farmer, Jeriel Salinas, Michael Munoz and Jennifer Crisp - are set for trial next year.
Plea deals were also announced Monday for:
- Caleb Lee Cole - Carl Cole's son
- Sneha Ramesh Mohammadi - real estate agent and ultimately Crisp & Cole Associates' chief financial officer
- Jayson Peter Costa - loan officer with Crisp & Cole Associates, who admitted in an interview with Eyewitness News that he had no license to do loans and claimed that Crisp and Carl Cole knew he had no license, yet allowed him to continue to work
Six more defendants previously pleaded guilty in the ongoing fraud investigation: real estate agent Robinson Dinh Nguyen, accountant Kevin Sluga, loan officer Jerald Teixeira, loan officer Christopher Stovall, Megan Balod and Leslie Sluga.