LAS VEGAS (KXNT) – Alicia Ruiz of Las Vegas will be spending 18 to 48 months in jail after being convicted in what the Nevada Attorney General’s Office calls a foreclosure rescue scheme.
Ruiz, 45, was sentenced on two felony counts of theft, a category “C” felony, for her role in a foreclosure rescue scheme committed between December 2011 and May 2013, according to the Nevada State Attorney General’s Office.
“Foreclosure rescue schemes take advantage of desperate and vulnerable homeowners who cannot afford to fall victim to scammers promising assistance,” said Attorney General Adam Laxalt. “Nevada’s homeowners should be cognizant of the warning signs, and follow our tips to protect themselves.”
Ruiz and two co-defendants operated a business known as National Prevention Center that defrauded homeowners using a foreclosure rescue scheme, Laxalt said.
Together, they solicited homeowners and promised their clients that they would purchase their foreclosed homes, then subsequently sell their homes at current value. After placing their trust in this business and paying thousands of dollars in upfront fees, clients’ homes were never purchased as promised and the victims were not reimbursed.
The Office of the Nevada Attorney General offers the following tips to avoid falling victim to mortgage and foreclosure scams, including avoiding paying upfront fees for foreclosure assistance; getting any promises that are made to you in writing; reading the fine print of any contract and understand what you are signing; never signing over the deed to your home unless you are selling it; and if you are at risk of foreclosure, contact your lender to try and make arrangements.
If you are facing mortgage default or foreclosure, consider contacting a HUD approved counseling agency.