According to court documents, Marien Brown, a/k/a Marien White, owned and operated both 1st Financial Resource, LLC, (First Financial) and 1st Federal Resource, LLC, (First Federal). She created and operated First Financial from September 2008 until March 2009, at which time the business became known as 1st Federal Resource, LLC (First Federal). She registered the business as 1939 Wentzville Parkway, Suite 178,Wentzville, MO, which is actually a UPS store which provides commercial mailbox services. She actually conducted the business from her residence on Ivy Brook Court in Wentzville.
Brown admitted with her plea that she researched and identified groups of homeowners in the state of Hawaii that were one or more mortgage payments behind, or were in imminent risk of home foreclosure then targeted that group of vulnerable home owners, and sent out a large number of unsolicited mailings to prospective clients representing that she operated a “mortgage rescue” or foreclosure rescue” service. More than eighty clients responded to her mailings and wired funds to First Financial and to First Federal. Marien Brown converted these funds to her own use. None of the client funds were ever sent to lenders.
Clients quickly realized that their funds had not been sent to their lenders, and that no new mortgage rates had been negotiated. Clients then began to call their mortgage holders who advised that they had no knowledge of, and no relationship with, First Federal or Marien Brown. Clients then attempted to reach Marien Brown and repeatedly left messages for her. The only way clients were able to get her to return calls, was to leave a message expressing a desire to wire her additional funds. The losses as a result of her scheme are approximately $265,000 and may rise, and Brown agrees that she is responsible for any and all additional losses and restitution for those losses.
Brown, 41, pled guilty to three felony counts of mail fraud before United States District Judge Rodney W. Sippel. Sentencing has been set for December 22, 2011.
Each count carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentences, a Judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States Attorney Howard J. Marcus is handling the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Submitted by the US Attorney’s office