Real Estate

Federal inmate gets 16 more years for orchestrating house thefts while in prison

Found guilty of using prison phones to lead house-stealing scheme using fake deeds

A man already incarcerated in federal prison had more than 16 more years tacked onto his sentence after he was found guilty of masterminding a scheme to steal numerous houses in Philadelphia, all while he was in prison.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Kenneth Hampton received an additional sentence of 200 months for leading a scheme to defraud the city of Philadelphia, the state of Pennsylvania, and owners and buyers of Philadelphia real estate.

And Hampton led the scheme from his prison cell.

During his time as a federal inmate, Hampton orchestrated a scheme to file false and fraudulent deeds for houses in Philadelphia. Hampton did so by using the prison telephones.

Using those phones, Hampton directed other members of the scheme to locate houses, prepare and file fake deeds, reside in the houses, and then eventually sell the properties for a profit.

For his involvement in the scheme, a federal jury in June found Hampton guilty of one count of conspiracy, eleven counts of wire fraud, and two counts of aggravated identity theft.

“The defendant in this case is a recidivist criminal who had the audacity, while he was in prison, to steal homes from innocent victims,” United States Attorney Louis Lappen said.

“Real estate frauds such as this have a devastating impact on each victim whose most valuable asset generally is his home,” Lappen continued. “Today’s sentence of more than 16 years in prison sends the message that our justice system will not tolerate this type of financial fraud, and those who commit these crimes will be punished severely.”

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