A New York real estate attorney is the ninth defendant convicted in a mortgage fraud scheme that defrauded banks out of more than $23 million in home mortgage loans.

Cheddi Goberdhan, an attorney in Queens, N.Y., pleaded guilty in federal court to bank fraud and conspiracy to commit bank and wire fraud. He faces a maximum of 210 years in prison, as well as paying restitution to the victims.

Prosecutors say the scheme involved arranging for homes to be purchased by straw buyers, who posed as buyers but who never had any intention of living in the properties. Loan officers obtained mortgages for the home purchases by submitting fraudulent applications to banks and lenders. The straw buyers would then default on the mortgages and the mortgage proceeds would be passed along to those involved in the scam, according to prosecutors. Source: New York Real Estate Attorney Pleads Guilty to Fraud, Dow Jones Business News (Jan. 11, 2011)