February 17th, 2017 at 11:44am
Paul A. Garcia, of Newport Beach, has agreed to pay $3.3 million in settlement to fraud charges brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Garcia allegedly defrauded investors and misappropriated money from the investment fund he managed, Caliber Partnership I LLC on a golf resort and real estate venture deal.
Another person, Richard T. Woods of Southlake, Texas was accused of misrepresenting Caliber’s financial status in marketing materials that he prepared and which were approved by Garcia. According to the SEC’s complaint, one of the fraud victims was an 82-year-old who lost $250,000.
Read the original article in L.A. Biz.
January 27th, 2017 at 10:02am
Fifty-five-year-old Angel Bronsgeest woman has pleaded guilty to federal charges of operating a real estate scam that resulted in Southern California investors losing $3.5 million, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.
Bronsgeest pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud, said the U.S. Attorney’s Office, admitting that she and Shawn Patrick Watkins solicited their victims at Orange County hotel seminars to invest in their company, called The Equity Growth Group, or TEEG. Their pitch was that TEEG managed hundreds of property and the rents they collected were used to purchase new properties. Investors could earn interest on their money, which was secured by the deeds of trust on the properties. But the U.S. Attorney’s Office said that TEEG was not acquiring new properties, had a negative cash flow and the investors who did receive “interest” payments received that money from funds Bronsgeest and Watkins solicited by new victims (Ponzi scheme).
Read the original article in the OC Register.
Read the press release by clicking on this link for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.
December 8th, 2016 at 5:50pm
Richard D. Lamphere, 53, who was found guilty by a jury in September on four of five charges in relation to a real estate fraud case, has indicated through his new attorneys his intent to seek a new trial.
The case against Lamphere dates back more than 10 years and concerns two men who were defrauded out of more than a combined $1.3 million in an Oroville real estate scheme. Both men gave Lamphere their money in the hopes that they would profit from Lamphere’s real estate investment project. Prosecutors, however, presented evidence that he used the victims’ investment money for his personal use.
One of the men, sued Richard Lamphere in civil court and was awarded $1.9 million. This proceeded the filing of criminal charges by the Solano County District Attorney’s Office.
Read the original article in TheReporter.com.
October 4th, 2016 at 7:54am
Mission Viejo resident Francisco “Frank” Hobson, 39, has pleaded guilty to taking $2.3 million-plus from investors in a real estate investment fraud.
As part of his plea agreement for wire fraud, Hobson must repay his victims at least $1.5 million, according to federal prosecutors.
According to court records, Hobson operated his “business” between December 2010 and June 2016 and promised the victims their money would be used to purchase properties. In fact, the properties were either not for sale or didn’t exist and the documents Frank Hobson provided were fraudulent or forged.
At one time, Francisco Hobson was a licensed real estate agent with the California Bureau of Real Estate before his license was revoked in August 2016.
Hobson used the victims’ money to buy groceries, travel and for laser-hair removal and plastic surgery, according to court records.
“The defendant made simple promises to his victims, promises he never intended to fulfill,” said U.S. Attorney Eileen M. Decker in a statement. “The defendant then used his victims’ hard-earned money to fund his personal lifestyle.
Read the original article in the Orange County Register or the press release by the U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California.
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.
June 17th, 2016 at 9:36am
Yorba Linda chiropractor Bobby Hamby has received a sentence of four years in prison for stealing over $2 million from investors.
Hamby, 56, who pleaded guilty in 2015 to two counts of wire fraud, must also pay more than $1.2 million in restitution to his victims.
Hamby’s business was called B+E Family Investments LLC. According to prosecutors, he solicited money from his victims, promising them he would buy and improve properties and resell them at a profit. Instead, he used the victims’ monies to pay his mortgage, dues at the Yorba Linda Country Club dues, car payments, attorney fees, medical and dental bills and other personal expenses.
Read the original article in the OC Register.
June 14th, 2016 at 3:00pm
Most banks that have been prosecuted during the mortgage crisis had been repackaging bad loans and telling investors they were good.
Not First Mortgage Corp., a now-defunct Ontario mortgage lender. First Mortgage did the opposite: selling good loans as bad.
As a result of a civil fraud case initiated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, First Mortgage agreed to pay $12.7 million to settle
What First Mortgage did was tell its investors that some borrowers had not paid their mortgages for months when the company had indeed received the payments, but did not deposit them. This allowed First Mortgage to repurchase those so-called bad loans at a discount, after which they deposited the payments and resold the loans at full price to other investors.
According to the SEC, First Mortgage and its executives made profits of $7.5 million by playing this charade with hundreds of mortgages between 2011 and 2015.
The company and six executives, including its president Clement Ziroli Jr. and his father, Chief Executive Clement Ziroli Sr., agreed to pay to settle the case, but they did not admit wrongdoing.
Read the original article in the Los Angeles Times.
April 29th, 2016 at 1:16pm
John Packard is a convicted felon who caught a lucky break.
Packard, 66, is the co-founder of Irvine-based Pacific Property Assets, along with his former partner, CEO Michael J. Stewart, 68. In exchange for testifying against Stewart in a case in which prosecutors alleged that about 650 mostly elderly investors lost a total of $169 million in savings and retirement funds when PPA declared bankruptcy, Packard received only 2 1/2 years, whereas Stewart was sentenced to 14 years.
Packard’s luck is that he and his ex-wife, who is serving a life sentence for contracting the murder of her wealthy boyfriend William McLaughlin, have a 16-year old daughter. U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney granted the lenient sentence to Packard for his cooperation and lesser culpability than Stewart.
Read the original article in the Orange County Register.
April 8th, 2016 at 10:27am
Federal prosecutors have awarded the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office the Outstanding Law Enforcement Agency Award for the Eastern District of California for its efforts to fight mortgage fraud and violent gangs.
In acknowledging the work of Investigator Glenn Gulley and Lt. Froilan Mariscal , U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner said “The investigators with the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office deserve particular recognition for their skill, diligence, and spirit of cooperation.”
Glenn Gulley worked on the FBI’s mortgage fraud task force and continues to work with federal investigators on several pending fraud cases, including the case against Xue Heu, a “serial investment fraudster” who posed as a government official to sell distressed properties to investors, according to federal prosecutors. Heu was sentenced to more than five years in prison. There are several articles about Xue Heu than can be found on the California Real Estate Fraud Report.
Read the original article in the Modesto Bee.
March 25th, 2016 at 6:48am
The Bakersfield Investment Club, located on Stockdale Highway is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The SEC filed a complaint last week against the company, alleging CEO Daniel Nase of running a fraudulent scheme designed to enrich himself. Nase, a former property appraiser for Kern County, took in over $11 million from 400 people and guaranteed his investors a minimum return of 15 percent.
Los Angeles-area attorney, Scott Vick, who represents Daniel Nase, said he client ” . . . was very transparent and well-intentioned.” The SEC got it wrong. They don’t win every case they bring.”
Read the original article in BakersfieldNow.com