A federal judge has sentenced a former mortgage loan officer convicted of organizing a Washington, D.C., house-flipping scheme involving mortgage fraud to more than 24 years in prison.

It’s hard to do real estate fraud without an appraiser as part of the team.

Prosecutors said Colwell was not a licensed appraiser but used other appraisers’ names and licenses to write “completely fabricated reports on the value of the houses.”

Well, that’s one way around it, steal an appraiser’s identity.

Two employees of the underwriter were also involved as well as the escrow officer.

Also entering a guilty plea for conspiracy to commit bank fraud was settlement agent Vicki Robinson. Robinson gave part of each bank loan to either Davis or Hall, who converted the money into a cashier’s check in the amount that the straw purchaser was supposedly making as a down payment. By creating the illusion that the buyers were bringing their own money to the table as a down payment