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For Immediate Release
PHILADELPHIA – Terrell Hampton who, along with his father and several other family members, defrauded the City of Philadelphia, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and innocent owners and purchasers of Philadelphia real estate, was sentenced to 119 months in prison today, announced U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain.
Hampton, 37, along with his father Kenneth and other family members, stole vacant homes in Philadelphia that belonged to people who could not afford to defend their properties. Kenneth Hampton was convicted and sentenced to 200 months in prison in November.
At the direction of his father, who was in prison at the time, Terrell looked for vacant properties to target, created and filed fraudulent deeds, sought buyers for the stolen properties, and kept Kenneth apprised of scheme developments. They communicated through phone calls, emails, and letters, as well as through Kenneth’s fiancée, co-conspirator Roxanne Mason.
The participants in the scheme moved into the stolen properties under the cover of fake leases that purported to grant them the right to occupancy. They then found ways to profit from the stolen properties, either by selling the homes to good faith purchasers, by saddling them with debt, or by taking advantage of government programs designed to aid legitimate homeowners.
“This defendant stole from people who didn’t have the resources to fight back, often resulting in victim battling against victim, homeowner against good faith purchaser,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “He lived up to the low example set by his father, and I am proud that the talented case team has put both of them behind bars.”
The case was investigated by the United States Secret Service, Department of Homeland Security - Office of the Inspector General, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Office of the Inspector General, City of Philadelphia. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Paul G. Shapiro and Sarah M. Wolfe.