4
| Crime |

Lucie Tondreau, North Miami's Ex-Mayor, Found Guilty on All Charges of Mortgage Fraud

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

Lucie Tondreau's political rise and fall was swift. She was elected to office as North Miami's first female mayor in May 2013. Then she was arrested and suspended from office less than a year later, and now she's been found guilty on all charges.

After just two hours of deliberation, the 12-person jury found Tondreau guilty on multiple conspiracy and fraud charges. She now faces up to 30 years behind bars, and will be sentenced next March.

The crimes Tondreau was found guilty of took place before she took office. However Tondreau was already well known in North Miami's Haitian community through her political activist work and radio show. She used her notability to attract "straw buyers," who allowed Tondreau to use their names to take out home loans in exchange for a fee. Much of the other information provided to banks on behalf of the straw buyers was fraudulent.

Between 2005 and 2008 Tondreau and thee partners, including her former fiancee Karl Oreste, conspired to scam banks out of up to $11 million in faulty loans. But when many of those real estate deal went belly up, Tondreau's victims were left in financial and credit ruin.

Oreste had previously pleaded guilty, but was not called to testify against Tondreau.

Tondreau was suspended from office in March by Governor Rick Scott, and was replaced in a special election this fall by Smith Joseph.

Tondreau is the second local mayor to be found guilty this year. Former Homestead mayor Steve Bateman was found guilty of corruption charges in September.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.