The Taylor Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. drama marches on.
This week, the failed mortgage company’s chief financial officer admitted to participating in the nearly $3 billion scheme that landed its CEO Lee Farkas in prison for 30 years and led to the collapse of the company. The scheme is considered one of the largest bank frauds in the nation’s history.
Former CFO Delton de Armas pleaded guilty to making false statements and conspiring to commit bank and wire fraud, the Department of Justice said. Prosecutors say de Armas lied and falsified documents in an effort to hide a more than $1.5 billion shortfall at the company’s subsidiary, Ocala Funding. His actions accelerated Farkas’ fraud and eventually led to the collapse of Colonial Bank, which was Taylor Bean’s key funder.
“As CFO, Mr. de Armas could have put a stop to the fraud the moment he discovered it,” U.S. Attorney Neil MacBride said in a statement. “Instead, the hole in Ocala Funding grew to $1.5 billion on his watch, and as it grew, so did his lies to investors and the government.”
De Armas’ conviction marks the eighth tied to Taylor Bean’s collapse. When sentenced on June 15, de Armas faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.