10/25/2014

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Final Crisp and Cole fraud defendant guilty on 7 counts

Final Crisp and Cole fraud defendant guilty on 7 counts

FRESNO, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — A federal jury returned mixed verdicts Tuesday against the final defendant in a long-running, headline-grabbing Bakersfield real estate fraud case.

Julie Farmer, who started as a bookkeeper with the defunct Crisp & Cole Associates and eventually became operations manager, was found guilty on three single conspiracy charges: conspiracy to commit wire fraud, mail fraud and bank fraud.

She was also found guilty on two counts each of committing wire fraud and mail fraud.

The jury acquitted her on single counts of wire fraud, mail fraud and conspiracy to launder money.

She was the only person in a case that had 15 defendants to head to trial. The other defendants, including principals David Crisp and Carl Cole, took plea deals.

Crisp & Cole Associates scammed tens of millions of dollars out of banks and mortgage companies between 2004 and 2007. They used straw buyers, submitting fraudulent loan applications with material misrepresentations.

Farmer's sentencing is set for July.

The U.S. Attorney's Office said most sentences are served concurrently, so even if Farmer gets the maximum sentence, the most she would serve is 30 years.

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