MONTEREY (CBS SF) -- A jury found a 57-year-old woman guilty of 12 felonies last week for her role in a real estate scam that saw numerous victims lose their homes.
The jury found Lemoore resident Amy Agtarap guilty last Wednesday of charges ranging from grand theft to forgery for her role in running an unlicensed mortgage modification business. She faces a maximum sentence of 10 years and four months in prison.
The case began when victims filed a complaint with the Monterey County District Attorney's Office Real Estate Fraud Unit over Agtarap's business as well as claims that she illegally charged upfront fees.
Early into the unit's investigation it found several victims, many of whom had lost their homes because of Agtarap's dealings but didn't file charges before the statute of limitations.
Investigators learned that Agtarap worked as an unlicensed real estate agent as well as an unlicensed lawyer, filing lawsuits and bankruptcy petitions without her victims' knowledge.
Further investigation discovered that Agtarap had defrauded the Social Security Administration for almost a decade by claiming she was disabled (she was not). Her banking records showed that Agtarap had 8 different bank accounts, most of them opened in the name of her 5-year-old daughter. In the end the district attorney determined Agtarap made $800,000 in hidden income, as well as $139,000 in fraudulent Social Security payments.
A judge will sentence Agtarap on Nov. 4.
for more features.