Kenneth Powell, 59, a former resident of Thousand Oaks, California, was sentenced by Ventura County Superior Court Judge Kevin McGee to serve 18 years in state prison for his role in a real estate investment fraud scheme. Powell was also ordered to pay $4,341,119 in restitution.
Powell had previously pled guilty to 15 felony crimes and admitted multiple special allegations, including the aggravated white collar crime enhancement which increases punishment for taking money or property in excess of $500,000, in a pattern of felony conduct involving fraud or embezzlement.
Katie Rose, 63, a former resident of Woodland Hills, California, was sentenced to serve 12 years 8 months in state prison for her involvement in this fraud scheme. Rose was ordered to pay $3,403,158 in restitution. Rose had pled guilty to 13 felony crimes and admitted the aggravated white collar crime enhancement as well.
Defendants Powell and Rose made contact with many of the alleged victims as “Ken & Katie,” the hosts of radio programs named “Academy of Real Estate” and “Money Intelligence” that previously aired on a local radio station. Defendants Powell and Rose paid the station for their air time.
Ventura County, California, District Attorney Gregory D. Totten announced the sentence.
This prosecution was the result of a long term investigation conducted by the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office Bureau of Investigation working in combination with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Bureau and the Ventura Police Department. These law enforcement agencies received numerous complaints against the defendants arising out of their marketing and sale of various investments purportedly secured by real estate in the state of Arizona and the California cities of Taft, Goleta, Canyon Country, Ventura, and Thousand Oaks.
The investigation revealed that from June 2005 through May 2008, Powell and Rose falsely represented to victims that investment monies would be used to develop new homes on vacant lots located in Taft, California. Additional victims were falsely led to believe their investments were being used to make loans to borrowers secured by recorded deeds of trust. The investigation revealed that the deeds of trust issued to the victims were essentially worthless because the properties were either previously encumbered by other liens or the deeds of trust were never recorded. Many of the victims were financially devastated as a result of the crimes committed by Powell and Rose.
Paul Charles Lascola (DOB 10/26/1942) of Thousand Oaks remains in jail on 24 felony charges arising out of the same investigation. His case was set for a preliminary hearing on October 10, 2012, at 8:15 a.m. before Ventura County Superior Court Judge Nancy Ayers in courtroom 14.