"The money is gone" Former mortgage broker faces fraud charges
Published Thursday, June 4, 2015 11:42AM MDT Last Updated Thursday, June 4, 2015 3:35PM MDT
An 18-month investigation into a multi-million dollar financing fraud has resulted in numerous charges against a local lawyer and former mortgage broker.
Police say a Calgary couple agreed to sell their home for over $2M and the money was given to a lawyer to be held in trust until the conditions of the sale were fulfilled.
The conditions of the sale were satisfied in December 2012 and the money was supposed to be released to the seller but when the sellers tried to contact the lawyer they found out he had left Alberta with all of their money.
“The money is gone,” said Staff Sergeant Kristie Verheul of the CPS economic crimes unit. “Essentially, the investigation that we are doing has revealed that (the money) has gone internationally.”
Police say that between June and December 2012, a local lawyer and mortgage broker allegedly defrauded seven other property owners through mortgage bridge financing.
Investigators say the pair allegedly obtained personal information from property owners and then approached investors under the pretense that funding was required for bridge financing.
Investors then provided the funds with the understanding that they would get their initial investment back plus interest but most of the money paid by investors went missing when the lawyer left the province.
Police believe the offenders took more than $3M in connection with the numerous bridge financing schemes.
‘We are suspecting that there are more victims out there and we want to encourage anybody that believes they’re a victim associated to this to come forward,” said Staff Sgt. Verheul.
Floyd Campbell, 46, of Calgary, is charged with 15 counts of theft over $5,000 and 15 counts of fraud over $5,000.
Campbell was disbarred by the Alberta Law Society in April of this year and will next appear in court on Friday, July 17, 2015.
Brandon Antonini, 43, of Calgary, is charged with 14 counts of theft over $5,000 and 15 counts of fraud over $5,000. He will next appear in court on Tuesday, June 9, 2015.
Antonini applied to withdraw his mortgage broker license from the Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA) last April and was the subject of conduct proceedings at the time of his application. The application was approved and a voluntary lifetime prohibition from industry membership was implemented.
Police are asking anyone with information about this case to call them at 403-266-1234 or Crime Stoppers anonymously using any of the following methods:
TEXT: tttTIPS to 274637