These types of scams are hardly new. Scammers will 'rent' vacant homes to unsuspecting victims. Earlier this year, an alert was sent out to local Realtors to beware of rental scams.
Metro has arrested two individuals who allegedly rented a vacant home to an unsuspecting woman. One of the scammers claimed to be a real estate broker. The scam came to light when an absentee owner from California found his Las Vegas home occupied by a woman and her two kids. The woman had answered an ad placed on Craig's list several months ago. She met a woman named Melinda Hertz, signed a rental contract and paid the rent in cash.
The police set up a sting operation to catch the criminals. On Monday, the woman arranged to meet at a restaurant to pay rent. Afterwards, police investigators swooped in and arrested 26 year old Melissa Cowan and Emilio Gonzales, 53. Both individuals are facing criminal charges of conspiracy, burglary and obtaining money under false pretenses.