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Old 11-02-2005, 03:20 PM
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Lightbulb New York residents charged with mortgage fraud

Three New York residents were charged in a case involving mortgage fraud, Nassau County, N.Y., officials said Monday.

Alton Lawson, 43, of Queens; Chester W. Matthews, 54, of Richmond Hill; and Reginald Johnson, 32, of Brookhaven, were charged with grand larceny and felonies in an alleged fraud scheme, Nassau County District Attorney Denis Dillon said Monday.

The principal defendant "attempted to steal the homes of two victims who were facing financial hardship by engaging in an elaborate real estate foreclosure rescue scam," according to Dillon.

Dillon said all three defendants worked together to defraud a 45-year-old Roosevelt woman and an 80-year-old Hempstead woman who were having financial difficulties.

Lawson allegedly visited each of the two homeowners and told them he could help them save their homes by refinancing. Dillon said Lawson tricked the victims into selling their houses to Matthews for $295,000 and $320,000.

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