It’s hard for me to imagine a man like Thomas Hastert a man who worked so hard to get ahead in this world becoming a felon. Hastert worked for the Nevada County Sheriff’s office, studied to become an attorney, then got his real estate broker’s license.
Once he got his broker’s license he proceed to engage in hard money lending in direct conflict with the law, making construction loans without fully funding them, a felony.
In addition, Hastert pleaded no contest to 62 counts of embezzlement, offering and selling unregistered and unqualified securities by false and incomplete communications. According to the Attorney General of California amounting to $20 million lost by his clients. That’s a lot of money to handle and lose. A standard fee for the mortgage broker Hastert is to charge is about 3 percent of the loan amount which means Hastert would have pocketed about $600,000.
Hastert’s attorneys and the California Deputy Attorney General Keith Lyon had reached a plea bargain that would have given Hastert five years in state prison. Normally that type of sentence means two and one-half years and he’s out of prison.
However, at the sentencing Judge Sean Dowling rejected the plea agreement and came back with his own sentencing of eight years and four months. Hastert’s attorney refused the new sentencing and demanded a jury trial.
I met Thomas Hastert some time ago, while he was an attorney. I did some investigations (as a civil engineer) for Hastert regarding building code violations for some of the real estate cases that he had. My impression of him at that time was that he was a nice person and I had no idea that he would resort to what he did. What does a person like that think? We have the Bernard Madoff, the Sir Walter Stanford’s who look you in the eye with a smile and steal your pocket book at the same time.
What do you think?