Madison resident Paul DiGiacomo was sentenced Thursday to seven years in state prison for his role in a mortgage fraud scheme that involved obtaining a mortgage in a dead man's name, the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General announced.
DiGiacomo, a lawyer, must serve a year and four months before he is eligible for parole, and pay nearly $200,000 in fines and restitution, according to a Star-Ledger report about the sentencing.
His attorney said DiGiacomo participated in the scheme as his real estate law practice was struggling and he was trying to support his family of four children.
His attorney, Vincent Basile, said in an interview the one-time youth sports coach is a "wonderful guy."
"He used really poor judgment in an effort to support his family," Basile said, adding that it's not an excuse for what he did.
He said he would apply to have DiGiacomo accepted into an intensive supervision program. If accepted, DiGiacomo could be eligible for parole in six months, he said.
DiGiacomo . He was one of five defendants who pleaded guilty in connection with the case, which involved defrauding an unsuspecting lender of $431,200 by getting a mortgage in a dead man's name.
The others involved in the scheme are scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 12.