California Real Estate Fraud Report

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Four Arrested, Charged in Alleged Grass Valley Ponzi Scheme

Four Grass Valley residents affiliated with Gold Country Lenders have been arrested and charged with multiple counts of securities fraud, conspiracy and elder (financial) abuse. for allegedly operating a Ponzi scheme that bilked dozens of investors of more than $2.3 million, according to California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris.

The defendants are: Phillip Lester, 65, and Ellen Lester, 65, (Phillips’s wife), Susan Laferte, 58, (Phillip’s sister) and Jon Blinder. Phillip Lester was the CEO of Gold Country Lenders and Laferte was its CFO. The two alone are facing 66 charges.

According to AG Harris, the defendants took over $2.3 million from investors in what she characterized was a Ponzi scheme. “These defendants exploited their personal relationships with these victims and emptied their bank accounts,” she said. “Schemes that target the elderly are especially heinous, which is why prosecuting fraud and elder abuse needs to remain priorities for law enforcement.”

Ironically (or not), Jon Blinder is the interim executive director of the Nevada County Economic Resource Council (NCERC). He asserts his innocence.

Read the original article in The Union.

© Copyright 2007-2017 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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