Friday, October 15, 2010

Mother, daughter plead no contest to felonies in real estate scam

Mother, daughter plead no contest to felonies in real estate scam

BY STEVE E. SWENSON, Californian staff writer Friday, Sep 24 2010 05:08 PM Last Updated Friday, Sep 24 2010 05:08 PM

A mother and daughter will go to prison for their part in a real estate scam that cheated dozens of people out of 24 homes, a prosecutor said Friday.

Alice Kantin, also known as Meyer, 69, and her 38-year-old daughter, Dawn Kantin, pleaded no contest Friday to felony charges that will put the mother in prison for two years and the daughter in prison for five years, Deputy District Attorney Gordon Isen said.

The two will be sentenced Oct. 25, but in the plea bargain approved Friday, the prison terms were agreed upon by the attorneys involved, he said.

The Kantins will also be ordered to pay restitution in an amount to be determined, but it is unknown if they have any money to pay the victims, Isen said. The loss is a few million dollars, he said.

The mother and daughter have been in jail in lieu of posting $2 million bail each since their May arrests. Their pleas came as the case was set for a pre-preliminary hearing.
Both pleaded no contest to one count of conspiracy to defraud clients and the daughter pleaded no contest to falsely acting as a notary.

The daughter's application to become a notary was denied by the Secretary of State's office due to a "substantial and material misstatement or omission in the application," according to a prosecution declaration in the case.

Each were charged with 44 felonies of conspiracy, embezzlement, theft, notary fraud and forgery stemming from transactions between 2007 and 2009.

Both women reportedly agreed to take over payments for distressed homeowners by using rents from people who had an option to buy the homes, investigation reports say.
But in most cases, the homes went into foreclosure during a time the senior Kantin poured at least $290,000 into her bank account, the reports say.

Both the homeowners and renters lost everything, the reports say.

Several victims, who could not be reached for comment Friday, have said in prior interviews with news reporters that they were so upset they still cry at the mention of the Kantin name.
Alice Kantin operated from a firm called Desert Air Real Estate Investments Inc. in Bakersfield, according to court reports. The Secretary of State's office has no record of the corporation.
Attempts to reach the mother's attorney, Brian McNamara, and the daughter's attorney, Leticia Perez, were unsuccessful Friday.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home