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Press Release

Residential Builder Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Customers

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Virginia

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Centreville man pleaded guilty today to defrauding customers who hired his company to build or remodel their residences.

According to court documents, from at least May 2017 through about April 2018, Pedro Felipe Valdes Sanchez, 57, devised and executed a scheme to defraud homeowners in and around McLean. Valdes contracted with several couples to build custom homes for them at a fixed price. He induced his customers to make payments to him by falsely representing that he would use the money to perform specific work on the customers’ properties. In the end, Valdes performed minimal work on these customers’ homes, sometimes only demolishing the existing residence on the customers’ property. Valdes also convinced one customer to lend him money by misrepresenting his company’s financial situation. He sometimes used client funds for personal expenses and routinely used funds from one client to fund another client’s projects.

Valdes is scheduled to be sentenced on February 14, 2023. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Jessica D. Aber, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema accepted the plea.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Heidi B. Gesch and Russell L. Carlberg are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:22-cr-194.

Updated November 8, 2022

Financial Fraud