Man Sentenced to Five Years for Role in Mortgage Foreclosure Rescue Scam
|U.S. Attorney’s Office August 05, 2013|
PHOENIX—On August 5, 2013, Frank Becerra Campos, 66, of San Diego, California, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge G. Murray Snow to five years’ imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for his role in an advance-fee mortgage rescue scam that took place in Arizona and California.
Campos had previously pled guilty to conspiring with two others, Miguel Carrera and Oswaldo Esqueda, to defraud more than 250 distressed homeowners out of approximately $675,000 in up-front fees with false promises of mortgage modification assistance. Campos’ prison sentence was the maximum allowed by statute, and Campos was ordered to pay back the fees to the victims in the form of restitution.
FBI Special Agent in Charge Douglas G. Price, Phoenix Division, stated, “Arizona suffered greatly when the housing market collapsed. Campos conspired with others to defraud homeowners who were on the brink of foreclosure, promising them financial assistance to save their homes. What is most disturbing is that primarily Hispanic homeowners were the target of this mortgage fraud scheme. The FBI’s Mortgage Fraud Task Force and the United States Attorney’s Office are committed to combat mortgage fraud and hold those individuals accountable who prey on distressed homeowners.”
Campos, Carrera, and Oswaldo operated under the business names Gold Capital Investments, LLC, and Foreclosure Home Savers, LLC, making false guarantees to mostly Spanish-speaking distressed homeowners that their mortgage principal balance and monthly payments would be reduced by 25 percent, and then failed to pursue any form of loan modification process on behalf of the homeowners.
When homes neared foreclosure, the homeowner was placed in bankruptcy proceedings to delay the foreclosure, but virtually all of the 250 or so victims ultimately lost their homes to foreclosure. Carrera and Oswaldo, both citizens of Mexico, fled from the charges and are believed to be in Mexico. Carrera is believed to be working in real estate under the name Mike Beltran.
The investigation in this case was conducted by the FBI and the prosecution was handled by Monica Klapper, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix.