Ex-Indiana University player Leary pleads guilty in fraud

July 16, 2010

Former Indiana University basketball player Todd Leary has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from an ex-business partner's multimillion-dollar mortgage fraud scheme.

Thirty-nine-year-old Leary of Carmel pleaded guilty in court Thursday to a felony charge of misappropriating title insurance escrow funds. His agreement with Allen County prosecutors calls for him to face up to three years in prison, with that cut in half if he pays nearly $295,000 in restitution before his October sentencing hearing.

When the judge asked Leary whether he knew what he was doing was wrong, he replied, "I did."

Prosecutors say Leary worked for Joseph Garretson, a title insurance broker who pleaded guilty in a major mortgage fraud case. Garretson, who operated Fort Wayne Title and Fort Wayne Mortgage, was sentenced in late June to 11 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to three counts of breaking the state loan-brokering law. He was also fined  $5,000 and ordered him to repay his victims $3.4 million

Investigators found more than a dozen cases in which Garretson refinanced mortgages for clients but didn't pay off the original loans, causing them to default.

Leary was a star at Lawrence North High School and played for the Hoosiers in 1989-94, including their 1992 NCAA Final Four team. He was an analyst for IU's radio broadcasts when he was arrested in February.


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