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The owner of a former real estate escrow firm was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 24 months in prison for bank fraud, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes. LORI LYNN ANDREW, 49, of Cashmere, Washington, the owner of Hartman Escrow, Inc., pleaded guilty to one count of bank fraud.  ANDREW stole more than $2.1 million through a variety of techniques, including making false entries in escrow closing documents, altering accounting records, and depositing checks into the general account instead of the trust account.  At the sentencing hearing, U.S. District Judge Richard A. Jones said, “Every single time you had an opportunity to change your mind and say ‘this is wrong,’ you kept doing it.”

“This defendant chose to victimize people when they were buying or selling a home–often the most important financial transaction of their lives,” said U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.  “Like all real estate escrow agents, the defendant was responsible for ensuring large amounts of money went where they belonged.  When she decided to line her own pockets rather than do her job, she crossed the line and earned the prison sentence that the court imposed today.”...