Jewel Hinkles, aka Cydney Sanchez, 63, has pleaded guilty in Sacramento federal court to bankruptcy fraud with respect to a foreclosure rescue scheme she operated.
The office of U.S. Attorney Benjamin Wagner noted that Hinkles is the third defendant to plead guilty. Jesse Wheeler, 36, of Roseville and Brent Medearis, 46, of Modesto had previously entered guilty pleas for committing bankruptcy fraud. A fourth defendant, Cynthia Corn, 60, of Oakland, awaits her trial, which begins August 6.
According to an article in the Central Valley Business Times, the businesses and relationships between the defendants was as follows:
Jewel Hinkles was the founder and general manager of Horizon Property Holdings LLC, in Beverly Hills. That business offered a program from 2008 through 2010 that she called the “Save My Home” or “Homesaver.” The program promised to both prevent foreclosure and to lower the principal balance on the homeowner’s mortgage. Hinkles/Horizon created a template of her program to affiliates, who then offered it to their clients. Two of the affiliates were Jesse Wheeler, who operated JW Financial Solutions in Roseville and Cynthia Corn, who ran Property Relief! in South San Francisco.
Homeowners were allegedly told by the defendants that investors would purchase their homes at a discount and later resell them back to the homowners at prices discounted from the original mortgage. In the meantime, the defendants filed fraudulent deeds transferring a fractional interest in the homeowners’ properties to the Pacifica Group 49/II (title fraud). The defendants allegedly frequently took their deceit a step further by filing fraudulent bankruptcy petitions in order to prevent the lender from foreclosing; hence, the guilty pleas to bankruptcy fraud.
Enrolling in Save My Home and Homesaver was pricey: there were initial upfront payments of from $1,750 to $6,500 and additional monthly fees ranging from $850 to $1,500.
The defendants allegedly made their business(es) very profitable: the indictment states that they took in approximately $4.9 million from over 1,000 homeowners, including those whose mortgages had been sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.