MIAMI MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO $3.6 MILLION FORECLOSURE INVESTMENT FRAUD
Defendant Fraudulently Sold “Reservations” to Purchase “Soon-to-be Foreclosed” Properties
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Miami Field Office, announced today that Diego L. Siman, 37, of Miami, Florida, has pled guilty to wire fraud. Sentencing has been scheduled for July 30, 2010 before U.S. District Court Judge James I. Cohn. At sentencing, the defendant faces a maximum possible statutory term of imprisonment of twenty years.
According to court documents and statements made in court today, Siman sought potential investors interested in purchasing properties that were allegedly soon to be in foreclosure. Siman told these potential investors that he had inside information from a bank employee about these certain properties that would soon be foreclosed upon. According to court documents, Siman then told potential investors that for a fee, they could purchase a “reservation” that would give them an opportunity to purchase the property at a discounted price as soon as it entered into foreclosure. The price quoted by Siman was substantially below market value, leading the potential investors to believe that the property could be resold for a profit.
Siman fraudulently sold “reservations” to more than fifteen individuals who invested more than $3,600,000. In truth, however, the defendant had no inside information regarding what properties would be foreclosed and never had the ability to purchase “reservations.” The properties for which the defendant sold “reservations” to purchase were not in foreclosure nor were they anticipated to be in foreclosure.
U.S. Attorney Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI agents involved in this case. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey A. Neiman.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.