Garret Griffith Gililland III, a key player in a huge mortgage and investment fraud that is still unfolding in Sacramento federal court, was sentenced Friday to seven years and 10 months in prison.
At the same time, his business partner, Shane Burreson, was sentenced to one year and 11 months.
Both defendants had earlier pleaded guilty to mail fraud and money laundering.
The specific activity they admitted was a scheme that featured falsified sales prices of approximately 46 homes Gililland brokered in Chico subdivisions between 2006 and 2008.
After the close of escrow, home builders would write kickback checks of $40,000 to $60,000 per home to various front companies Gililland and Burreson controlled. The pair, along with others, would then use this money to pay buyers $20,000 to $30,000 for purchasing the homes. The kickbacks were not disclosed to the mortgage lenders who financed the transactions.
Gililland, 31, of Paradise, and Burreson, 39, of Orland, also arranged for straw buyers and investors to fraudulently obtain mortgages on the homes with inflated income figures and bogus employment histories.
In sentencing Gililland, U.S. District Judge Edward J. Garcia said he weighed the defendant's substantial assistance to the government in prosecuting other mortgage frauds against the scope of his crimes, his flight to Spain and subsequent fight against extradition, as well as other factors.
In sentencing Burreson, Garcia said he credited the defendant's early withdrawal from the scheme, his cooperation with the government and notable contributions to his community.
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