Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Phoenix Man Gets Five Years For Peddling Bogus Foreclosure Assistance In Racket That Raked In $3M From 1,800 Victimized Homeowners In Ten Months

In Phoenix, Arizona, KNXV-TV Channel 15 reports:

  • A Phoenix man has been sentenced to 5 years in prison Monday for defrauding at least 1,800 distressed Valley homeowners in 2009 and 2010 in a mortgage scheme that made his company almost $3 million.

  • Luis Belevan pleaded guilty in October to conspiring with Brian Prehoda to target Hispanic homeowners during the mortgage crisis, convincing them to pay an up-front fee of $1,595 to their company with the false promise of mortgage assistance.

  • According to the Department of Justice, Belevan told homeowners and mortgage lenders that his company, The Guardian Group, LLC, has the financial backing of a $40 billion hedge fund. An investigation by the FBI found that the company had no financial backing at all.

  • In just 10 months of operation, the company managed to defraud at least 1800 distressed homeowners and make nearly $3 million – an amount he has been ordered to repay as restitution to the victims.

  • The mortgage crisis in the greater Phoenix Metropolitan area has been devastating to homeowners and the economy," said FBI Special Agent in Charge James L. Turgal Jr. with the Phoenix Division. "Belevan preyed on distressed Hispanic homeowners who were trying to avoid foreclosure on their homes.” The scheme, he said, “resulted in financial losses to homeowners with no resolution of their mortgage concerns.”

  • Belevan was also sentenced to 3 years of supervised release following his prison sentence. His associate, Prehoda, is scheduled to be sentenced on March 12, 2012.

Source: Phoenix man sentenced to 5 years in prison for defrauding Hispanic homeowners.

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