A Columbia man is charged with fraud and identity theft in a nine-count federal indictment involving home mortgages, the U.S. Attorney's office said.
Randal Antoine, 36, was charged in an alleged scheme to defraud AmeriDream Inc., a company that provides down payment assistance to first-time home buyers, according to U.S. Attorney W. Walter Wilkins.
The indictment alleges that Antoine posed as a mortgage loan originator, applying to Ameridream for funds on behalf of his purported clients, according to Wilkins's office.
Antoine is accused of using stolen identities and social security numbers of Midlands residents to apply for the funding, Wilkins said.
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Authorities contend that between February and September 2008, he falsely represented to Ameridream that 38 different loan closings would be taking place, causing AmeriDream to transfer approximately $328,000 to Antoine.
If convicted on all counts, Antoine faces a maximum possible penalty of 81 years in prison and a fine of $1.5 million.
The case was investigated by agents of the U.S. Secret Service and is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Nathan S. Williams of the Columbia office for prosecution.