January 20th, 2017 at 11:13am
Fontana resident Jose Armando Rodriguez, 57, has pleaded guilty to grand theft, foreclosure consultant fraud and recording a false instrument.
Rodriguez, the owner and operator of Global Home Investments, told his five victims that he would save their homes from foreclosure, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Tony Wold of the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office. Wold said that from 2010 to 2012 Rodriguez stole thousands of dollars from the victims, all located in the Oxnard area, but he never helped them.
When the victims later tried to short sell their homes, they found out that Rodriguez also filed false trust deeds and assignments of rent on their homes, all of which were lost to foreclosure.
Read the original article in the Ventura County Star.
December 8th, 2016 at 5:39pm
Patrick Iturra, 46, of Canyon Lake, pleaded guilty to two counts of foreclosure consultant fraud and three counts of felony grand theft, according to Ventura County prosecutors.
Iturra, who operated a business called Mercury Business Group, was accused of promising homeowners he could save their properties from foreclosure if they paid him upfront fees.
In addition to facing a possible jail sentence, Iturra “will be ordered to pay restitution to the victims,” say prosecutors.
Read the original article in the Ventura County Star.
October 28th, 2016 at 6:14am
Franklin Marquez, 52, has been sentenced to 4 to 12 years in prison for his involvement in a mortgage fraud scheme. He was convicted on one count of pattern of mortgage lending fraud, a category “B” felony.
Marquez and his co-defendants – Maria Lorena Anzu, Jose Ben Rodriguez and Gilberto Navidad , were alleged to have operated a criminal enterprise in Las Vegas called Majestic Group, LLC. Their pitch to distressed homeowners was that they could sell their homes to Majestic Group at market value and then the company would sell their homes back to them at lower, more affordable prices. The victims were charged upfront fees along with monthly payments.
Read the original article in News3LV.
October 13th, 2016 at 9:32am
Nancy Russell Kempis, 64, of Santa Clara, has been sentenced for more than six-months in jail for scamming a family out of their home and defrauding four banks.
The former real estate agent convinced the family to sell her their home at a “dramatically reduced price” in order to avoid foreclosure. She rented them the home and promised to return it. Instead, she secured a number of fraudulent mortgages, sucking all the equity out of the house and defaulting between 2006 and 2009. The home was then lost to foreclosure and the family evicted.
Kempis’ scam cost lenders $750,000.
Kempis eventually fled to New York, went into hiding under the false name Morpheus Daw Pud Ko and helped run a women’s ministry.
“Ms. Kempis scammed hundreds of thousands of dollars and drove a family into homelessness,” Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Charles Huang said in a statement.
Read the original article in KRON4.com
September 30th, 2016 at 7:46am
Victims of a Petaluma real estate agent whom prosecutors ripping off at least 100 persons in the Bay Area in an alleged mortgage fraud scam are outraged at the terms of his settlement with state prosecutors.
Miguel Angel Lopez-Soleta, 44, pleaded no contest to felony grand theft and embezzlement from an elderly person through his Rohnert Park business, Mortgage Modifiers, in 2012.
Lopez-Soleta will only serve one year in jail and receive five years of probation.
According to former client Robert Gillis, whose mother lost her Novato home to foreclosure because of Lopez-Soleta, “It’s totally unacceptable. None of the victims agree with it. They are so upset.”
Caroline S. Chen, the deputy attorney general handling the case for Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, did not return a call Thursday seeking comment.
The only good bit of news is that the real estate license of Miguel Angel Lopez-Soleta has been revoked by the California Bureau of Real Estate.
Read the full article in the Press Democrat.
September 30th, 2016 at 7:29am
Sixty-one-year-old Gregoria Mendoza was sentenced by Ventura Superior Court Judge Ryan Wright to seven years and four months in state prison after she pleaded guilty to multiple counts of grand theft and one count of foreclosure consultant fraud.
Mendoza, a resident of Oak View, was also ordered to pay over $470,000 in restitution to her victims.
Mendoza operated six or more real estate investment schemes according to the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office, snagging investors from Ventura, Los Angeles and Tulare counties.
Read the full article in the VCStar / Ventura County Star.
September 22nd, 2016 at 7:34pm
Reafael Sanchez, an Orange County, Florida real estate agent, is facing charges after federal prosecutors said he devised a short sale fraud scheme.
Sanchez is alleged to have concocted a scheme to help owners in foreclosure to file fraudulent bankruptcy paperwork. The bankruptcy stays would possibly give Sanchez enough time to conduct a short sale of the properties and earn himself a commission.
Federal prosecutors, though, said that over a two-year period, Sanchez collected money and assisted at least 30 homeowners facing foreclosure in filing fraudulent bankruptcies. All of the bankruptcies he helped his clients file were dismissed in 14 or 15 days, according to bankruptcy attorney Scott Shuker.
Sanchez, who faces up to five years in prison, has agreed to make a plea in the case, but a date hasn’t been set.
Read the original article in WFTV Orlando.
September 2nd, 2016 at 10:34am
Long Beach pastor Karl Robinson, 52, has pleaded guilty to one count of bankruptcy fraud.
According to the press release by the U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California, Robinson would stall the evictions of homeowners who had been foreclosed on by filing fraudulent documents, including phony bankruptcy petitions. For this, he charged the homeowners almost $3 million.
“This defendant filed scores of fraudulent bankruptcy actions — sometimes on multiple occasions in relation to a single property,” U.S. Attorney Eileen M. Decker said in a statement. “He took advantage of distressed homeowners by stealing identities and lying to them about what he could do for their properties as long as they continued to pay his fees.”
You can read another article about Pastor Robinson’s mortgage fraud in the Long Beach Press Telegram.
July 28th, 2016 at 5:33am
Aliso Viejo resident Charles Wayne Farris, 55, has pleaded guilty to federal fraud charges for his role as a sales manager in a mortgage modification fraud case that cost 1,500 people almost $9 million.
Farris’ co-conspirator, former attorney Ronald Rodis, had previously pleaded guilty to a felony conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. A third defendant, Bryan D’Antonio, still awaits his turn at trial for nine counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
According to prosecutors, both Rodis Law Group and America’s Law Group used nationwide radio advertisements to portray themselves as a team of experienced attorneys that could negotiated lower-interests rates or principal balances.
“The defendants in this case preyed upon vulnerable homeowners facing the loss of their home and callously took advantage of what hope they had left,” said Deirdre L. Fike, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, in a statement last week.
Read the original article in the OC Register.
July 22nd, 2016 at 5:07am
The U.S. Department of Justice announced that Orange County, California, resident Charles Wayne Farris has pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Santa Ana, California, for his role as the sales manager of a multi-million dollar fraudulent mortgage modification scheme.
Farris, 55, of Aliso Viejo, California, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter for the Central District of California to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud for his crimes, which occurred between October 2008 and June 2009.
Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Benjamin C. Mizer, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said “This defendant supervised dozens of telemarketers who used lies and false promises to take money from struggling homeowners for a worthless service. We will continue to prosecute all kinds of mass-marketing and telemarketing fraud schemes, especially those that prey on vulnerable victims.”
Added U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker of the Central District of California, “This defendant managed an entire team of people whose sole job was to lure struggling home owners into the fraud scheme. It is because of Mr. Farris that so many people were victimized for so much money.”
Farris acknowledged that he participated in a scheme that sought to convince homeowners to pay between $3,500 and $5,500 for the services of the Rodis Law Group (RLG) and a successor entity, America’s Law Group (ALG). RLG and ALG