Friday, March 21, 2008


Nice scam.

LOS ANGELES — In August 2007, investigator Eric Bremner found evidence in a shredder at Olympic Escrow that he says confirmed borrowers' complaints that they had never signed the mortgage documents that pushed them into a financial hell.

Bremner found pieces of documents that had been cut to remove signatures and notary seals. Loan applications, escrow agreements and other documents had signatures that had been taped on, he said.


The group is accused of targeting unknowing homeowners whose homes had escalated in value by offering dreamlike mortgage refinancing offers, with promises of cash back and lower monthly payments, Bremner said.

Victims later learned they had been locked into high-interest rate loans, excessive fees and unfavorable terms. In some cases, the cash back never materialized.

Late Tuesday, the alleged ringleader in the scam, 25-year-old Eric Pony, and his sister, Paulette Pony, 23, turned themselves in to police to face charges including conspiracy, grand theft, forgery and elder abuse. Five other suspects were also arrested.


For Tracylyn Sharrit, 40, the regulations would be too late. After meeting with Eric Pony, she said she found her signature forged on loan documents and the monthly payments on her three-bedroom, 1,100-square-foot home in San Bernardino jumped from $1,070 to $1,868.

The money promised to her in an equity cash-out has been whittled away on fees, and her loan amount ballooned from $167,000 to more than $260,000.

Sounds like they conned some people into signing up for shitty mortgages with bait and switch tactics, and just went ahead and forged documents for others.