Mortgage fraud earns Ramni Kumar home detention

MATT NIPPERT
Last updated 13:44 02/04/2014

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A woman who enabled $3.9 million of mortgage fraud and saddled low-income borrowers with an artificially high level of debt, was sentenced this morning to 12 months home detention.

Ramni Kumar pleaded guilty in January in the Auckland District Court to 10 charges brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) of dishonestly using a document.

The offending related to the purchase of 10 properties in the second half of 2010 and targeted banks and low-income families who did not qualify for finance.

Kumar bought the properties initially, then sold them on to the low-income families for a profit and used false documents to get mortgages and finance the deals.

Commenting on the conviction, SFO director Julie Read said she was pleased with the outcome.

"The manipulation of mortgage lending systems is a serious form of fraud," she said.

"Banks need to be able to rely on documents submitted in support of mortgage applications to ensure that costs are contained for all borrowers."

Vicki Letele still faces 11 charges of dishonestly using a document in relation to the same incident and is due to face trial in August.

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- Fairfax Media

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