The federal trial of a major Miami affordable-housing developer accused of stealing tens of millions of dollars from the U.S. government will start in late August of next year.
On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro set Aug. 24 as the date after the defense team for Lloyd Boggio, ex-CEO of Carlisle Development Group, sought at least one year to prepare for trial.
Boggio, 69, was expected to plead guilty to two conspiracy counts of stealing government funds along with his successor at Carlisle, Matthew Greer, 37, who pleaded guilty in September and now faces up to 10 years in prison. But at the last minute, Boggio changed his mind and decided to take his chances at trial.
Prosecutors Michael Sherwin and Michael Berger filed an indictment charging Boggio with the conspiracy offenses as well as wire fraud and money laundering charges, which carry stiffer punishment if he is convicted at trial. They said in court papers that they were ready for trial now and that it would take about three weeks.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Miami Herald
Boggio, who founded Carlisle with Greer's father in 1997, appeared in court with his defense attorneys, Scott Srebnick and Edward Shohat. They cited the complexity of the case and its nearly two million records as the basis for seeking a one-year continuance of trial.
The judge gave them some leeway, calling the August start date “fair.”
Prosecutors say Greer and Boggio conspired with former development partners Biscayne Housing Group’s co-founders Michael Cox and Gonzalo DeRamon, as well as Fort Launderdale contractor Michael Runyan and Plantation contractor Rene Sierra. Collectively, prosecutors say, the developers stole about $36 million in federal housing subsidies by inflating construction costs and receiving kickbacks on 14 mostly Miami-Dade apartment projects meant for low-income residents. The contractors, who paid the kickbacks, kept a portion of that money, too.
All but Boggio pleaded guilty.