PHILADELPHIA — A former mortgage broker convicted along with a former Philadelphia-area pastor in a $6 million mortgage fraud scheme has been sentenced to 10 days in a federal prison followed by eight months of house arrest with weekends in a halfway house.
Denise Haines, 43, was also ordered Thursday to join co-defendants in paying $1.35 million in restitution, the Delaware County Daily Times (http://bit.ly/19pO0cl) reported.
Haines and Michael Wilkerson Sr., 47, former pastor of New Millennium Life Restoration Fellowship, which has locations in Phoenixville and Spring City, were convicted earlier this year in federal court of bank fraud and other counts.
Authorities say Wilkerson victimized congregants as straw buyers, initially making mortgage payments but soon telling the buyers they had to pay the mortgages, which went into default.
Defense attorney R. Emmett Madden sought probation or house arrest, arguing that the evidence indicates Haines just took information from people and reported it.
"Is justice served by sending Ms. Haines to jail?" Madden asked, adding that she has three children.
Wilkerson, who has denied any wrongdoing, was sentenced earlier to more than 14 years in prison.
Information from: Delaware County Daily Times, http://www.delcotimes.com