Virginia Beach lawyer gets 18 months for mortgage fraud

    A Virginia Beach lawyer was sentenced Thursday to 18 months in federal prison for his role in a $2 million mortgage fraud scheme.

    William D. Timberlake, 52, pleaded guilty earlier this year to one wire fraud count. He admitted that between Aug. 2005 and May 2006, while working as a settlement agent on seven real estate closings, he failed to disclose to the lenders that the buyers would be receiving a portion of the seller’s proceeds and that he used some of his own funds to pay closing costs.

    The court records say that one buyer also was a straw purchaser, meaning that person was not the actual buyer. Timberlake received about $14,000 in fees for his work.

    The seven homes involved were in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Hampton. Mortgage companies loaned $2.2 million for the homes but lost more than $600,000 when the buyers defaulted and lost the properties to foreclosure.

    Timberlake has agreed to repay $628,000 in restitution. He also agreed, before the Virginia State Bar, to the revocation of his law license.

    Assistant U.S. Attorney Alan Salsbury argued for a prison term between 37 and 46 months, which is within the federally recommended guidelines.

    U.S. District Judge Jerome B. Friedman, however, granted Timberlake’s request for leniency, shaving about half off the recommended minimum. The judge also allowed Timberlake to self-report to prison in early October.

    Tim McGlone, (757) 446-2343,

    Published on 02/09/2010 12:39:14