U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Missouri
February 23, 2015

North Carolina Man Pleads Guilty to Fraud Charge in Real Estate Scheme

ST. LOUIS, MO—Hubolist Elliott pled guilty to mail fraud in connection with a real estate investment scheme involving fractional interests in vacation properties.

According to court documents, between 2009 and 2014, Elliott, and his company, Travel World Vacations, Inc., offered investment opportunities in vacation properties in Florida. The investment opportunity typically involved a fractional real estate transaction which Elliott and Travel World Vacations, Inc., presented to investors as an opportunity to purchase and own a deeded interest in a specific vacation property. As part of the scheme, typically neither Elliott nor Travel World Vacations, Inc. owned any interest in the properties being offered to investors as available for a fractional real estate purchase. In some instances, the real property represented as an opportunity for investment and ownership did not exist. In other instances, the real property represented as an opportunity for investment and ownership did exist but neither Elliott nor Travel World had a legal interest, fractional or otherwise, that could be conveyed to an investor or any right to enter into a transaction regarding that property. A number of investors from around the country, including one investor from the St. Louis area, invested in Elliott’s fractional real estate scheme. Expected losses as a result of the scheme total more than $1,000,000.

Elliott, 43, Cary, North Carolina, pled guilty to one felony count of mail fraud before United States District Judge Rodney W. Sippel. Sentencing has been set for May 29, 2015.

This charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentences, a judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States Attorney Charles Birmingham is handling the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

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