Virginia Beach settlement agent sentenced to 18 months for misappropriating $715K in closing funds

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The former president of an escrow and title company in Virginia Beach has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for misappropriating $715K of closing funds.

Prosecutors say 58-year-old Virginia Beach resident Tammy Hamrin, formerly known as Tammy Cheek, served as the settlement agent in the transactions.

According to court documents, Hamrin was the president, secretary and treasurer of Preferred Escrow and Title, Inc.

Hamrin pleaded guilty to wire fraud back in March.

During 48 real estate transactions, Hamrin misappropriated $715,000 of closing funds that had been deposited by various lenders and individual buyers into the company’s escrow account.

She did so by making seven unauthorized wire transfers of funds from the escrow account to certain entities at the request of a person with whom Hamrin had an online personal relationship, prosecutors say.

Court documents reveal that Hamrin partially replenished the misappropriated funds by depositing about $199,000 of her own money into the escrow account. Investigators say this resulted in a remaining shortage of approximately $516,000.

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