Commerce

Former Head of Anaheim Chamber of Commerce Named in Federal Felony Criticism Alleging False Statements on Mortgage Utility | USAO-CDCA

          SANTA ANA, California – The previous president and CEO of the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce is predicted to look this afternoon in federal court docket after being charged with mendacity to a mortgage lender about his property whereas looking for a mortgage for a $1.5 million house within the San Bernardino Mountains.

          Todd Ament, 57, of Orange, was charged in a 99-page prison criticism filed Monday afternoon in United States District Courtroom with making false statements to a monetary establishment whereas looking for funding in late 2020 to buy a second house – a five-bedroom residence in Huge Bear Metropolis.

          The affidavit in assist of the prison criticism outlines a plot through which Ament – with the help of a political advisor who was a accomplice at a nationwide public relations agency – devised a scheme to launder proceeds meant for the Chamber via the PR agency into Ament’s checking account. This infusion of money – which seems to have been a mortgage from the PR agency engineered by the political advisor – allegedly influenced the lender’s determination to fund the mortgage.

          The scheme led to a collection of wire transfers from the PR agency that in the end gave Ament $205,000 and made it seem he had sufficient money readily available to safe the house mortgage, in response to the affidavit. Ament allegedly used a few of that cash for the down cost, and a few was used to make an out-of-escrow cost to the vendor. The affidavit states that Ament made a $200,000 cost on to the vendor in an obvious effort to cut back the sale value of the home, thus lowering property taxes and decreasing the fee to the vendor’s actual property agent, the affidavit states.

          An investigation outlined within the affidavit revealed that Ament and the political advisor had an in depth relationship for a number of years, one which included main a small group of Anaheim public officers, consultants and enterprise leaders. That group –described by Ament and the political advisor as a “household” and a “cabal” – met frequently at “retreats” to allegedly exert affect over authorities operations in Anaheim, in response to the affidavit.

          Ament and the political advisor additionally allegedly devised a scheme to divert proceeds meant for the Chamber via the PR agency and into Ament’s private checking account. The affidavit alleges that Ament and the political advisor schemed to defraud a hashish firm that had retained the political advisor to foyer for favorable cannabis-related laws in Anaheim. The hashish firm paid $225,000 to the Chamber with the understanding that it could have entry to a job pressure that crafted such laws, however not less than $31,000 of that cash was paid on to Ament with out these funds being disclosed to the consumer, the affidavit alleges.

          The cost of creating false statements to a monetary establishment carries a statutory most sentence of 30 years in federal jail.

          A prison criticism accommodates allegations {that a} defendant has dedicated against the law. Each defendant is presumed to be harmless till and until confirmed responsible in court docket.

          The FBI and IRS Felony Investigation are conducting the investigation on this matter.

          Assistant United States Attorneys Daniel H. Ahn, Daniel S. Lim and Melissa S. Rabbani of the Santa Ana Department Workplace are prosecuting this case.

 

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