Alleged Loan Modification Scammer Arrested
Stephen Vitalich, 46, has been arrested on charges of theft. The criminal complaint allleges Vitalich, doing business as Consumer Loan Excellence of America, LLC or NBMS of America, LLC, promised clients he would obtain mortgage loan modifications that would substantially reduce clients' monthly mortgage payments. The complaint further alleges that after collecting large advance fees, Vitalich performed no substantive work on his clients' behalf and eventually disappeared with their money.
Vitalich is charged with one count of theft of obtaining money in the amount of $2,500 or more from a person 60 years of age or older, two counts of theft of obtaining money in the amount of $2,500 or more, and one count of theft of obtaining money in the amount of $250 or more.
In early 2010, the Nevada Attorney General's office launched an investigation of Consumer Loan Excellence of America in response to numerous consumer complaints filed with the office.
An initial hearing in Department 8 of the Justice Court of Las Vegas Township was scheduled for April 16, 2012. Vitalich was booked in the Clark County Detention Center.
Remember that homeowners should never pay up front fees to reduce their loans. Help is free and generally speaking, no one should pay for assistance. Nevadans who face mortgage difficulties should instead contact a non-profit housing counselor, either through www.HUD.gov or a local non-profit housing clinic, to learn about the mortgage process and their rights as homeowners.
The criminal complaint is a formal allegation that the defendant has committed a crime. It is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
The case was investigated and is being prosecuted by the Attorney General's Bureau of Criminal Justice Fraud Unit.Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto announced the arrest.
Anyone who has information regarding this case or to report loan modification scam can contact the Attorney General's Bureau of Consumer Protection Hotline at 702-486-3132. Once connected press "0" to receive instructions on how to submit a complaint.
"Nevadans continue to struggle with the economic downturn which has wreaked havoc on our state's housing market," said Masto. "Some homeowners will do anything they can to stay in their home, including unknowingly turning to predators. I hope this prosecution serves as a warning to other would be predators to think twice taking advantage of Nevada homeowners."
source: Mortgage Fraud Blog