On Jan. 11, the United States received a $1 million payment as part of a settlement reached in a fraudulent transfer action brought by the Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced in a Press Release.
According to court documents, in 2014, Mary Sue Weaver, 67, of Phoenix, Arizona, purchased a home titled solely in her name. A year later, Weaver was indicted for multiple counts of wire fraud, mail fraud, bank fraud, and false statements to a federally insured institution, with estimated losses of more than $22 million. She subsequently pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of bank fraud and was sentenced to four years in prison and ordered to pay more than $15 million in restitution. Weaver currently is serving her sentence under home confinement.
Prior to her guilty plea, and a mere six weeks after Weaver was indicted, she executed a deed of trust against the home in favor of her husband, who was not charged. The deed of trust fully encumbered the home, putting it beyond the reach of her creditors, and prevented sale of the property to pay restitution to the victims of the fraud.
The U.S. Attorney filed a civil complaint under the Federal Debt Collection Procedures Act against Weaver and her husband, alleging that the execution and recording of the deed of trust to Weaver’s husband was fraudulent. After substantial discovery and litigation, the parties agreed to settle the action at mediation, where the defendants agreed that Weaver’s husband would make a $1 million cash payment to be applied towards Weaver’s restitution obligation.
“Convicted defendants who attempt to conceal or encumber their property to deprive victims of their lawfully ordered restitution will be found and stopped like Mary Sue Weaver was,” said U.S. Attorney Scott. “The job of the Department of Justice doesn’t end at conviction, and we never stop fighting on behalf of victims.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Robin Tubesing handled the case for the United States.