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Real estate broker pleads to buying property set for sale

NORFOLK (AP) A Virginia Beach real estate broker has pleaded guilty to secretly buying government-owned properties he had been hired to sell.

Federal prosecutors say Robert Resh, 55, pleaded guilty Aug. 14 to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, The Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk reported.

Resh repeatedly bought U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development properties he was selling with the help of a real estate attorney and various straw purchasers, prosecutors said. According to prosecutors, attorney Jerry Mack Douglas warned Resh to stop the practice, but he did not.

Court documents say Resh used a series of shell companies he controlled to buy four properties across the Hampton Roads area.

Resh is scheduled for sentencing on Dec. 10, and could get up to five years in prison.

Douglas, a longtime Virginia Beach real estate lawyer, agreed to disbarment effective July 30. He also pleaded guilty in connection with Resh’s purchase of government properties and awaits sentencing.

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