California Real Estate Fraud Report

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Los Angeles Man Could Get Life Under 3 Strikes Law If Convicted in Real Estate Fraud Scheme

A man already convicted twice for residential burglary in 1997 is now facing a life sentence under the California 3-strikes law.

Timothy Barnett, 49, is accused of approaching South Los Angeles homeowners in distress and offering to buy their homes at a steep discount and rent them back to him. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has filed 23 charges against him.

According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, in California, “a person can be convicted of residential burglary for entering someone’s house with the intent to commit a felony, even if he or she enters with the homeowner’s permission. Burglary is one of the dozens of serious or violent crimes considered strikes under the law.”

Barnett’s prior burgary charges, for which he spent almost five years in prison, have to do with this form of non-violent burglary. He would appear on the victims’ doorsteps and then have them sign long documents. The victims took him at his word after he told them he was a Christian trying to help people (affinity fraud).

From the article, I’m gathering Barnett then flipped the homes to third parties who were the parties ultimately leasing back the homes. While his attorney, Amy Konstantelos, defends her client’s right to make a profit, the victims argue that this is not what he told them.

Jury selection is ongoing. This should be a very interesting case, one in which Barnett might go to prison under 3 strikes for being a serial white-collar offender.

© Copyright 2007-2018 Monique Bryher

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The information and notices contained on The California Real Estate Fraud Report are intended to summarize recent developments in real estate fraud, mortgage fraud, short sale fraud, REO fraud, appraisal fraud, loan modification scams, loan modification fraud and other real estate related crimes occurring in Los Angeles and California. The posts on this site are presented as general research and information and are expressly not intended, and should not be regarded, as legal advice. Much of the information on this site concerns allegations made in civil lawsuits and in criminal indictments. All persons are presumed innocent until convicted of a crime. Readers who have particular questions about real estate fraud, mortgage fraud and appraisal fraud matters or who believe they require legal counsel should seek the advice of an attorney.

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