Ray Foakes Gets 70 Months

January 20, 2012

All Posts, News

Ray Foakes, a member of the Sonoma County charter of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, was sentenced to 70 months in prison Tuesday for signing a fraudulent mortgage application. Federal prosecutor’s and defense attorney’s commonly call the charge “the head shot.”

It was the charge federal prosecutors used to get former Baltimore Police Commisioner Ed Norris. Norris did six months and went on to play a detective in the HBO series The Wire. The head shot became a plot element in the final season of that series. Many adults in America are guilty or exaggerating their income or making other false statements on mortgage applications.

Foakes could have been sentenced to as much as 30 years in prison.

Mortgage Scheme

Foakes pled guilty to the charge last October 25. He was indicted the previous month on charges that he “knowingly and intentionally (participated) in a scheme and artifice to defraud and to obtain money and property from mortgage lenders by means of materially false and fraudulent pretenses, representations, and promises and omission of material facts and for the purpose of executing such scheme and artifice did knowingly and intentionally cause to be transmitted by means of wire communication in interstate commerce certain writing, signs and signals, specifically wire transfers of fund related to mortgage loans and refinancing….”

The improper mortgages were arranged by a San Francisco mortgage broker named Jacob Moynihan and his son Gerald Moynihan. Foakes’ offense took place in July 2007. Foakes’ fraudulently financed property was on Laguna Avenue in Santa Rosa. Another defendant named Josh Leo Johnson is also a Hells Angel. In all, eight people were indicted for mortgage fraud in the case.

Jacob Moynihan is also charged with possessing more than 100 marijuana plants.

Comparing Mortgage Scheme Punishments

According to the press release, in addition to his prison term, Foakes was “ordered to pay $1,085,000 in restitution for his role in a multi-million-dollar mortgage fraud scheme.” U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup also sentenced Foakes “to a three-year period of supervised release during which time he will face an expanded search condition and his ability to associate with other members of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club will be limited. The defendant will begin serving the sentence immediately, having been in continuous federal custody since his arrest.”

Foakes was the Hells Angel who struck the first blow in the infamous fight between members of the Hells Angels and Mongols Motorcycle Clubs in Harrah’s Casino in Laughlin, Nevada in April 2002. He did about a year in prison for his part in that fight and he has been on the federal radar ever since.

The most famous villain in the American mortgage meltdown was former Countrywide Mortgage Chief Executive Officer Angelo R. Mozilo. Mozilo is widely reported to have made $470 million from fraudulent mortgages during the real estate boom in the early years of the new millennium. Mozilo personally paid $47.5 million in fines for Countrywide’s alleged crimes. He never did a day in prison.


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5 Responses to “Ray Foakes Gets 70 Months”

  1. bob Says:

    what kind of crib was involved in all this shit?I get the part about a Laughlin defendant being hounded,untold taxpayers’ money being expended for little effect,the Moynihan chump having motivation to cooperate,etc.But what type of dwelling was involved?Hyperbaric chambers,climate-controlled wine cellars,five or more-car garages?In my neck of the woods ,one-percenters live by humble standards.For a sentence like that,I gotta wonder what kind of crib.

  2. Philo Says:

    OK, So in an attempt to get low-income, mostly minority people into houses, the federal government via fanny mae and freddie mac, et al routinely approved mortgages without verifying the borrowers income. Often it would be made explicitly clear to the borrower when asked to give information on income that it would not be verified. To my knowledge none of those people have been charged, let alone sent to prison, for doing basically the exact same thing this guy has been convicted of..


  3. rollinnorth Says:

    Welcome to the wonderful world of Federal criminal sentencing.

  4. Rebel Says:

    Dear Bob,

    The prices of the properties were mostly in the high six figures which is fairly typical for major metropolitan areas in California. People from places outside California are often shocked by the prices of real estate in this state. I believe all the properties were fairly nice but ordinary homes. I think a place in Healdsburg, which is a pleasant, litle wine country town, was valued at around $400,000 so it was probably a shotgun shack. Most news accounts state Foakes’ property was purchased to be a “marijuana grow house.” I personally doubt that. Marijuana, like property values, is another California subject that is difficult to explain to outsiders. So I won’t even try here. Also, I think marijuana should be legal for adults to grow, possess and use.


  5. Bookworm Says:

    Around the time of these so called mortgage crimes, almost 75% of the mortgage loans issued in California were called Stated Income Loans. What that means is the applicant is stating that they have an income that varies. Little or no documentation was needed to support the applicants claim as to how much money they made and when they made it. So almost all of the 75% who used these loans exaggerated their income. Otherwise they would of not have used the Stated Income Loan. Because the Stated Income Loan had higher interest rates than a normal loan. Brokers gave out the State Income Loans and manipulated the numbers to secure the mortgage. Brokers were also more than happy to exaggerate the borrowers income for them. Thats where the predatory lender phrase starts to show up.
    The Stated Income Loan is now called the Liar Loan by the Feds. The public in general is not getting charged criminally for a majority of these Liar Loans. In fact,they are jumping back in line and receiving counseling and other subsidies for their experiences with mortgage predators. The loans opened the door for other tactics such as more borrowing, refi’s, balloons etc. These same loans funded the borrowers new Suburban and jet skis. The loans funded the purchases of land & houses in some of the borrowers REAL country of origin and allegiance(Not the uSa). Some loans funded the applicants longing dream to be a slum lord. For the most part, the brokers and the public walked away from the Liar Loan situation. Some of the public that were trapped with Liar Loans now live in a high rent houses. Some brokers that issued the loans are out of business. Few are charged, even less are convicted and sentenced to do time in the Feds.
    I am certain that if thse men did not belong to a club, they would have never been charged, much less convicted of a “crime”. A “crime”, that when added up, could possibly involve a 100,000 potential offenders in California ALONE.

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