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Seven Former Dime Bank Employees Indicted On Mortgage Fraud Charges

January 25, 1996

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) _ Seven former Dime Savings Bank loan officers were indicted by a federal grand jury Thursday on charges they falsified home mortgage loan documents in New Hampshire in the late 1980s.

The indictment alleged Phillip Thibeau, former sales manager of Dime Real Estate Services of New Hampshire Inc., told loan officers to lie on loan applications to help unqualified buyers get mortgage loans.

Dime alleges it lost millions of dollars when developers and real estate agents across New England falsified statements to trick the bank into writing mortgages for unqualified borrowers.

The bank sold about 1,500 low-documentation loans in New Hampshire from February 1987 and August 1989. About one-third of the loans have ended in foreclosure.

Thibeau and the loan officers profited because Dime paid them a commission on each loan they wrote, the indictment alleged.

Thibeau as well as Stephen Bracci, Erick Brunelle, Michael Graninger, Karla Lee Grahm, Nancy Keene and Daniel Tate were charged with conspiracy, making false statements and aiding and abetting, the government said.

Thibeau instructed loan officers to ``tell borrowers what incomes they would need to have in order to obtain the loans, and remind the borrowers that incomes would not be verified,″ the indictment said.

At least 50 developers, real estate agents, lawyers and low-level Dime employees have been charged with bank fraud, according to the New England Bank Fraud Task Force in Boston.

Dime critics, including a federal judge, suggest top bank officials condoned the loan practices. Federal prosecutors in New Hampshire have said they are investigating Dime for a possible role in mortgage fraud.

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