Debbie Foust, 60, pleaded guilty on Monday to one count of wire fraud in a United States District Court for her role in a scheme to defraud clients out of money that was to be used as payment for commercial real estate. Foust, a real estate broker and former owner of Century 21 Music City, admitted to obtaining a $200,000 deposit via interstate wires from clients to purchase a parcel of commercial real estate in Madison. Instead of keeping these funds in trust for use as a down payment, Foust wrote checks totaling $170,000 to other accounts she controlled.
The United States Attorney’s Office also claims that Foust wrote a check to the sellers of the commercial parcel that was returned for insufficient funds, and failed to appear at the closing for the sale of the property.
United States District Judge William J. Haynes Jr. accepted Foust’s plea and the sentencing hearing has been scheduled for September 12, 2013. According to the federal statutes in this case, Foust faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney William F. Abely.