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Las Vegas Real Estate Blog

Your Las Vegas real estate information source. The latest news, new construction, scandals, additions to the strip and other Las Vegas and related information.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Rental scam on Craig's List

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.



At 2:35 PM, Blogger geovani said...

These scams should now be seen as a common ploy adopted by fraudsters. They take down particulars of homes listed for sale at online auction sites and use it to offer the same place for rent elsewhere.Correspondence with prospects are often done entirely via emails. The email will claim they moved recently from their homes to wherever-they-are-now on missionary work. It will use flowery words and will tug at your heartstrings to cover the scam.


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At 8:39 PM, Blogger toddrgilbert said...

I have one of these emails now. I'm sure of it. The pictured house is way to good to be true and the owner says he is in Nigeria on some sad quest. I read the email once and when I read Nigeria, I just thought yeh right! If any one wants to hunt these crooks down let me know.


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