Tuesday, April 23, 2002
San Fernando Valley Attorney Sentenced to One Month in Jail, Ordered to Pay Restitution in Real Estate Scheme
By NAZANIN AGANGE, Staff Writer
Attorney Kristopher A. Hollands was sentenced yesterday to one month in prison and five years probation and was ordered to pay restitution for mail fraud in a real estate scheme.
Hollands turned himself in to federal authorities and pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Christina A. Snyder on Jan. 11.
Snyder agreed with U.S. Attorney Angela Davis and defense counsel Dennis Landin on a sentence reduction based on Hollands’ admission of guilt and his acceptance of full responsibility.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office alleged that Hollands was looking for real property in 1997 for personal investment when he came across land in San Fernando that he discovered had title recording irregularities. The property was titled to the Veteran’s Administration but belonged to Citicorp Mortgage.
Hollands prepared a phony deed purporting to transfer the property from the V.A. to a non-existent person and then to himself. Following development and improvements on the property, Hollands sold the land at a profit of $100,000.
Marlon Villa, a spokesman for the State Bar of California, said Hollands was on interim suspension and not entitled to practice law in the state pending the State Bar Court’s evaluation of his conviction. The suspension would continue until all appeals had been exhausted.
Davis told the MetNews that Hollands turned himself in and said the matter was plaguing his conscience and that he wanted to correct the situation.
Ordinarily the charge carries a one- to two-year prison term, Davis said. In a case where there is a guilty plea, the sentence is usually one year. Because Hollands turned himself in without any prior investigation it was “in the public’s interest to reward him for coming forward,” Davis said.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office was recommending a downward departure to six months of house arrest.
In court, Landin and Hollands asked for one month in custody and subsequent supervised release and community service instead of the prosecutions’ proposal. Hollands told the court he wanted to put the incident behind him and put his life back together.
“I intend to overcome this and make my life better,” he said.
Snyder deemed the departure appropriate and sentenced Hollands to one month custody, supervised release for five years and 200 hours of community service.
Snyder set a June 3 surrender date.
Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company