Fresno Foreclosure Scam Arrest

December 3, 2008 8:08:08 PM PST
A Fresno man has been arrested, accused of renting out dozens of foreclosed homes that he doesn't own! 66-year-old Samuel Haley was arrested in October after a woman called police telling them someone was living inside her home!Samuel Haley doesn't have a real estate license, but he was able to find vacant foreclosed homes, and rent them out. The home behind me is one of those homes. Fresno police say, this is a very complicated case and that they're lucky they caught Haley when they did.

"He was really, I believe in the infancy stage of a major foreclosure scheme," said Chief Dyer.

Fresno police say since March of this year, 66-year-old Samuel Haley has made $26-thousand dollars by breaking into foreclosed homes and renting them out.

"He would rent a property to them that he had no right to do so by gaining access through the multiple listing service," said Chief Dyer.

Police say an unnamed real estate agent gave Haley this computer code device. That gave him access to lock box combinations for hundreds of vacant foreclosed homes. Once Haley gained access, investigators say he started renting the homes out to unsuspecting victims like Cathy Kinard.

"I didn't know I was being scammed until Detective Dinnell knocked on my door and told me what was going on," said Cathy Kinard.

Kinard now has until December 12th to find a new place to live.

"This person that did this to me should be very severely punished for what he did to me and other families cause this happened around the holidays and what are we supposed to do?"

Kristin Ables is asking herself the same question. She called police after discovering someone was living inside her vacant home. A home, she says, Haley was renting out.

Kristen Ables said, "We knock on the door, and say excuse me, why are you in our house, you're not supposed to be here, we didn't authorize anybody to be in our house.

So far, investigators have filed 36 felony charges against Haley. They say he was currently renting out 13 homes, had another 19 people ready to rent, and was scouting an additional 150 Fresno area homes.

"He is nothing more than a scam artist, nothing more than a Con Artist who is trying to take advantage of innocent people," said Chief Dyer.

Attempts to reach Haley were unsuccessful. Investigators say they believe there are several more victims. If you have any information, call the Fresno Police Department.

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