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Prison for Mineola lawyer in mortgage fraud

A Mineola real estate lawyer was sentenced to more than 4 years in prison Friday for his role in a $9 million mortgage fraud scheme.

Eric Finger, 47, was ordered to forfeit $7.2 million in addition to the 51-month jail sentence handed down by U.S. District Judge Naomi Buchwald in federal court in Manhattan.

Prosecutors alleged that Finger worked as a lawyer for lenders but was in fact part of a fraud ring that used buyers with "straw identities" to get mortgages, and that he disbursed the proceeds of loans to co-conspirators while misleading lenders. Dozens of residential properties in New York City and Long Island quickly defaulted in the scheme.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said that Finger "abused his license to practice law and disgraced the bar."

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