Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Elderly Couple Include RICO Charges In Lawsuit Alleging They Were Duped Into Signing Over Their Home As Collateral For Loan

In Los Angeles, California, Courthouse News Service reports:

  • An elderly couple claim in court that real estate agents bilked them into using their home as collateral for a new church.

    Erma and James Marshall and the Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church of San Bernardino sued Dan Bochner and Rolando DeArmas (also referred to as DeArmis in the complaint) and Bochner's foreclosure agent Reliable Trust Deed Services, in a federal RICO complaint.

    The Marshalls, with "ages exceeding 74 years," claim that in 2005 DeArmas tricked them into signing over their home as collateral for the purchase of a movie theater in San Bernardino, which the couple intended to use as a church. After the property was purchased, mortgage payments fell into arrears and the Marshalls' home was entered into a foreclosure sale, the couple says.
  • "DeArmas knew that plaintiffs, Marshalls, were an elderly couple who were unfamiliar with real estate transactions and could easily be tricked and convinced into signing documents for their residence to be used as collateral for the Del Rosa church property," the complaint states.
  • The Marshalls seek cancellation of instrument and damages for RICO fraud, negligent misrepresentation, usury, and elder abuse.

For the lawsuit, see Marshall v. Bochner, et al.

For some California case law on one legal approach to undoing a scam like the one alleged here, see Unwinding An Abusive Or Fraudulent Real Estate Transaction? Determining If The Deed Is Void, Or Merely Voidable.

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