HUD says Florida-based mortgage company under investigation

ORLANDO — Federal housing officials confirmed Tuesday that Ocala, Fla.,-based Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. is being investigated for possible mortgage fraud.

As part of the probe, the Federal Housing Administration has barred the mortgage and bank holding company from originating new FHA-insured mortgages, the Department of Housing and Urban Development said in a news release.

On Monday, U.S. Treasury agents raided Taylor Bean’s Ocala headquarters and Colonial Bank’s regional offices in Orlando. Officials executed search warrants at both locations, but would not disclose the nature of the investigation.

Earlier this year, the two companies had struck up a $300 million deal to help Colonial obtain more than $500 million from the government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program. That deal recently fell apart.

HUD alleged Tuesday that Taylor Bean’s CEO Paul R. Allen provided false or misleading information about the company’s delayed financial audit for its most recent fiscal year, according to The Associated Press.

Taylor Bean President Ray Bowman is accused of filing false certifications on its annual report to HUD. Company officials could not be reached for comment.

HUD wants to prohibit the executives from doing business with the government for 18 months. Taylor Bean has also been barred from issuing securities for Ginnie Mae, or the Government National Mortgage Association. Ginnie Mae will take control of its nearly $25 billion loan portfolio, HUD said.