SACRAMENTO -- Three Bay Area residents face 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine if they are convicted of 12 counts of mail fraud and bank fraud.

A federal grand jury returned the 12-count indictment charging Surjit Singh, 66, of Dublin; his son, Rajeshwar Singh, 38, of Pleasanton; and Anita Sharma, 51, of Gilroy, with mail fraud, bank fraud, and false statements on a loan and credit application.

The indictment alleges that Surjit Singh recruited people with good credit to act as straw buyers for residential properties owned by his family members and associates.

Rajeshwar Singh, a licensed real estate agent, helped grow the scheme by submitting loan applications for the straw buyers, according to court documents.

The Singhs then prepared and submitted applications to lenders that falsely stated the straw buyers' income, employment, liabilities and intent to occupy the homes as their primary residences. Those straw buyers included Anita Sharma.

According to the indictment, the defendants were responsible for accumulating more than $2.1 million in residential mortgage loans. Four properties in Elk Grove, Sacramento, Modesto and Stockton are included in the indictment.

All of the properties were foreclosed on, which resulted in a total loss of more than $1.2 million.

If convicted, the defendants face a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

Contact Katie Nelson at 925-945-4780 or follow her at Twitter.com/katienelson210.