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Scammed Homeowners Have No Recourse

LAS VEGAS -- Thousands of valley homeowners who may have been caught in mortgage fraud scams have little recourse.

It was announced Thursday that 123 people were arrested in southern Nevada and accused of over-inflating home values.

Read a partial list of those arrested

"It's not the bank that misled them, it's the actual loan agent, mortgage broker," said Yolanda Macias, Citizen Home Advocates.

Homeowners already underwater in their mortgages are quickly learning there are few options available on getting them back above water.

"At this point, the banks aren't looking to cut their debt. They know the value isn't there on the properties," said Macias who works as a negotiator between banks and homeowners. She says many homeowners are confused about where to go for help.

123 Charged in Las Vegas in Mortgage Fraud Crimes

LAS VEGAS -- More than a hundred alleged mortgage fraudsters are now behind bars. Las Vegas was one of the key targets of a federal crackdown on home mortgage scammers in an effort called Operation Stolen Dreams.

The Southern Nevada Fraud Task Force has charged, sentenced or convicted 123 people with mortgage related fraud crimes. Seventy-three of those charged worked in the Las Vegas real estate industry.

The collective law enforcement effort aimed at mortgage fraud has netted 500 arrests. Those arrested include real estate agents, mortgage brokers, loan officers and even a builder.

Henderson Man Gets Prison in Foreclosure Relief Scam

LAS VEGAS  -- A 49-year-old Henderson man has been sentenced to state prison after pleading guilty to bilking Las Vegas-area homeowners who faced foreclosure in 2007 and 2008.

Jeffery Tye Brown was sentenced Monday by Clark Country District Court Judge Kenneth Cory to one to 2 1/2 years in prison. Brown is the former owner of DB Financial Services in Henderson.

He pleaded guilty Feb. 25 to felony mortgage fraud, and avoided trial on multiple felony theft charges. The charges stemmed from an investigation by a Nevada state attorney general mortgage fraud task force.

Prosecutors say Brown was extradited from the Philippines, where he fled after during the investigation in 2008. Prosecutors said Brown inflated victims' incomes on loan applications and misled customers with a guarantee that he could resolve pending foreclosures.

 (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Inspectors Need Help with Mail Thefts

LAS VEGAS -- Incidents of mail theft around the Las Vegas valley are finally linked to one suspect, after he was caught on camera.

Residents in the apartment community most recently hit say they're worried because of what may have been in their mailbox.

"Things with my Social Security number, my bank account statement with account numbers, things like that. So that's very shocking," said resident Shantell Williams.

The Camden Commons Apartments in Henderson was hit last month. Surveillance video in it's mail room show a man entering it armed with a crowbar to pry open a bank of mail boxes. He quickly collects what he can before anyone comes around.

Postal officials say something like this can happen anytime or anywhere.

"It was daylight when he was doing that so just because its the middle of the day doesn't mean someone's not going to do something like that," said postal inspector Luke Caggiano.

Henderson Police Officers Identified in Woman's Shooting

HENDERSON, Nev. -- Henderson Police Department has released the names of the six officers involved in the shooting and killing of a 39-year-old woman.

Police shot Kelly DuPriest on Monday night. Police say the officers fired their weapons when DuPriest drove a car directly at them. Police say DuPriest and 21-year-old Carlos Enrique Pedraza were on a crime spree when police caught up to them on MacDonald Ranch Drive.

The officers are identified as:

  • Sgt. Christopher Delacanal, hired in 1996
  • Officer Juan Castro, hired in 2007
  • Officer James Dunn, hired in 2003
  • Officer Kevin Grant, hired in 2006
  • Officer Michael Schmitz, hired in 2004
  • Officer Jeff Wiener, hired in 2002

Anita Mann Sentenced in DUI Crash that Killed 2

LAS VEGAS -- Anita Mann, the 19-year-old, who was drunk when she hit and killed two people will spend years in prison.

After admitting she was guilty and not going to trial, Mann was sentenced Tuesday for the deaths of Louis Madden and Karen Hicks of Henderson. Police say Mann has a blood alcohol level more than three times the legal limit when she slammed into Madden's SUV in February.

Mann tearfully apologized to the victims' families in court. " I pray for the victims families everyday. I'm not a bad person I just made a very bad mistake." She also apologized to her mother and father. She also told the court that she accepted full responsibility for what happened.

Grief-stricken family members of the victims also spoke in court.

Police Search Doctor's Home and Office in Golfer Death Investigation

HENDERSON, Nev. -- A search warrant has been released in the investigation into the death of golfer Erica Blasberg.

Henderson police searched the offices and home of Dr. Thomas Hess three days after Blasberg was found dead.

Police have released no details into their investigation, and the search warrants are the first glimpse the public has seen into the death of the promising young athlete.

Read a copy of the search warrant

Blasberg was found dead after they received a 911 call. Sources say Hess placed the 911 call, but police say she was found alone. The doctor also spoke to Blasberg by phone the night before she died. The Clark County Coroner has not released the cause of death.