U.S. Attorney’s Office
September 19, 2011
District of New Jersey
Former CEO of Worldwide Financial Resources Pleads Guilty to Bankruptcy Fraud
TRENTON, NJ—The former CEO of Worldwide Financial Resources, a New Jersey-based mortgage origination firm, pleaded guilty today to bankruptcy fraud in connection with his January 2010 personal bankruptcy petition, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
David Findel, 46, of Monmouth County, N.J., pleaded guilty to an information charging him with bankruptcy fraud before U.S. District Court Judge Peter G. Sheridan in Trenton federal court.
According court documents and statements made in court:
On January 29, 2010, Findel filed for individual Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection. In his bankruptcy petition, Findel concealed almost $200,000 in personal assets from the U.S. Trustee, the bankruptcy case trustee, and creditors. Findel claimed in the petition he had $5,500 in cash on hand, no household goods, no jewelry, no automobiles, and no other personal property of any kind not already listed in the petition. However, according to documents and statements of witnesses, Findel actually had approximately $41,851 in cash on hand, eight watches with an estimated value of approximately $55,350, 21 boxes of fine china and silver with an estimated value of $13,965, approximately 511 bottles of wine with an estimated value of $44,540, 11 paintings with an estimated value of $7,750, and four pieces of jewelry with an estimated value of $6,240, at or around the time he filed the petition.
Findel claimed that in June 2009 he had transferred a 2009 Jeep Wrangler to another individual in exchange for $5,000, but documents and witnesses indicated he still possessed the vehicle, which had an estimated value of $19,350.
As part of his guilty plea, Findel admitted that he was the sole owner of all the above property. He agreed to forfeit all right, title, or interest in this property to the United States.
The count of bankruptcy fraud to which Findel pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000. Sentencing was scheduled for Nov. 14, 2011, before Judge Sheridan. Findel pleaded guilty Oct. 14, 2010, to an Information charging him with wire fraud in connection with an $11 million fraudulent loan scheme. He is scheduled to be sentenced on that count Sept. 27.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael B. Ward, in Newark, and Region 3 U.S. Trustee Roberta DeAngelis and the Newark office of the U.S. Trustee, with the investigation that resulted in today’s guilty plea.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Aaron Mendelsohn of the Economic Crimes Unit and Frances Bajada of the Criminal Division in Newark.
This case was brought in coordination with President Barack Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. President Obama established the interagency Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force to wage an aggressive, coordinated, and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. The task force includes representatives from a broad range of federal agencies, regulatory authorities, inspectors general, and state and local law enforcement who, working together, bring to bear a powerful array of criminal and civil enforcement resources. The task force is working to improve efforts across the federal executive branch, and with state and local partners, to investigate and prosecute significant financial crimes, ensure just and effective punishment for those who perpetrate financial crimes, combat discrimination in the lending and financial markets, and recover proceeds for victims of financial crimes.