Los Angeles Federal Loan Fraud Lawyer
Federal law provides criminal penalties for individuals who knowingly make false statements to certain public and private entities for the purpose of improperly influencing decisions regarding federal loans, subsidies, guarantees, etc. 18 U.S.C. § 1014 provides:
“Whoever knowingly makes any false statement or report, or willfully overvalues any land, property or security, for the purpose of influencing in any way the action of the Federal Housing Administration, the Farm Credit Administration, Federal Crop Insurance Corporation or a company the Corporation reinsures, the Secretary of Agriculture acting through the Farmers Home Administration or successor agency, the Rural Development Administration or successor agency, any Farm Credit Bank, production credit association, agricultural credit association, bank for cooperatives, or any division, officer, or employee thereof, or of any regional agricultural credit corporation established pursuant to law, or a Federal land bank, a Federal land bank association, a Federal Reserve bank, a small business investment company, as defined in section 103 of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958 (15 U.S.C. 662), or the Small Business Administration in connection with any provision of that Act, a Federal credit union, an insured State-chartered credit union, any institution the accounts of which are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, any Federal home loan bank, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation, or the National Credit Union Administration Board, a branch or agency of a foreign bank (as such terms are defined in paragraphs (1) and (3) of section 1(b) of the International Banking Act of 1978), an organization operating under section 25 or section 25(a) of the Federal Reserve Act, or a mortgage lending business, or any person or entity that makes in whole or in part a federally related mortgage loan as defined in section 3 of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act of 1974, upon any application, advance, discount, purchase, purchase agreement, repurchase agreement, commitment, loan, or insurance agreement or application for insurance or a guarantee, or any change or extension of any of the same, by renewal, deferment of action or otherwise, or the acceptance, release, or substitution of security therefor, shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both. The term “State-chartered credit union” includes a credit union chartered under the laws of a State of the United States, the District of Columbia, or any commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States.”
Readers will note that the majority of the statute’s text is dedicated to enumerating certain public and private entities to which the statute applies. Regardless of which agency is in question, 18 U.S.C. § 1014 criminalizes the behavior of knowingly making a false statement to one of the enumerated agencies for the purpose of attempting to influence that agency’s decision making.
For example, suppose one were to apply for a loan from an “agricultural credit association,” and, in so doing, make knowingly false statements about one’s monthly income and the value of one’s assets. These statements could form the basis of a conviction under 18 U.S.C. § 1014.
A conviction for 18 U.S.C. § 1014 may be punished by a maximum sentence of 30 years incarceration in federal prison, a $1,000,000 fine, or both.
- The statement was not false – Truth is always a defense given the statute’s requirement that a false statement be made.
- The statement was false, but not knowingly false – If your attorney can show that you were simply mistaken, or did not intend to convey false information, you cannot be convicted of 18 U.S.C. §1014.
- The statement was made to an individual or entity outside of the statute’s coverage – Note the long list of institutions contained in §1014’s text. That list is extensive, but not comprehensive. It may be that the allegedly false statement for which you are being charged was made to an entity not covered by the provisions of the statute.
These defenses are all fact-specific and may or may not apply in a given case. Consult with your attorney about the best possible way to defend yourself based on the specific circumstances of your case.
Call for a free consultation today!
If you, or someone you know, is being charged with 18 U.S.C. §1014, time is of the essence. Call our experienced Los Angeles federal loan fraud attorneys today for a free phone consultation. They will advise you on your options, and educate you about the criminal process.
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