Federal indictments charging 38 people with taking part in various mortgage fraud schemes have been handed up in Arizona this month.
The indictments were filed against loan or escrow officers, real estate appraisers and agents and so-called "straw buyers" for various fraud or cash-back schemes.
Thursday's announcement came as Attorney General Eric Holder announced a nationwide crackdown on mortgage fraud that led to nearly 500 arrests since March 1.
The Arizonans charged include a man and woman from the Phoenix area accused of pocketing $8.7 million from a scheme that used seminars to recruit straw buyers for homes. The woman was a mortgage broker who helped obtain loans in excess of the purchase price.
U.S. Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke says the indictments show how pervasive mortgage fraud has become.