Attorney Involved in Scheme that Targeted Distressed Homeowners Sentenced to 30 Months in Federal Prison

Date Published: 
July 17, 2017
News Type: 
Press Releases
Program Area(s): 
Federal Housing Administration (FHA)

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that BRADFORD BARNEYS, 51, of Odenton, Maryland, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 30 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervise release, for conspiring with Timothy W. Burke in a long-running fraud scheme that targeted distressed homeowners throughout Connecticut. BARNEYS was an attorney licensed to practice in Connecticut and has an office in Bridgeport.

According to court documents and statements made in court, between approximately 2010 and November 2015, Timothy W. Burke, formerly of Easton, engaged in a scheme to defraud individuals, mortgage lenders and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) by falsely representing to homeowners who were in, or facing, foreclosure on their homes that he would purchase their homes and pay off their mortgages. The distressed homeowners agreed to sign various documents that Burke presented to them on the understanding that, by signing the documents, they would be able to walk away from their homes without the burdens of their mortgage or other costs associated with home ownership. Burke also told homeowners that the process of negotiating with the lenders can take time and that, in the meantime, to ignore any notices regarding foreclosure. After he gained control of these houses, Burke rented out the properties to tenants by advertising the properties on craigslist.com and other means and falsely representing to tenants that Burke owned the property...