Archives For fraudulent quit-claims

Alireza Zamanizadeh, aka Ali Zamani, 63, Portland, Oregon was sentenced today to 18 months in federal prison and five years’ supervised release for using a residential property he did not own as collateral for obtaining a bank loan worth more than $316,000.

According to court documents, on or about February 17, 2017, Zamanizadeh filed a quitclaim deed in Deschutes County, Oregon transferring a residential property in Bend, Oregon to his business for one dollar without the property owner’s consent. A quitclaim deed is a document used to quickly transfer the ownership of real property from one party to another.

Zamanizadeh then used the property as collateral for obtaining a loan worth $316,092 from a mortgage lender and forged the property owner’s signature on a statement verifying the property transfer. Based on his false representations, the mortgage company approved the loan and transferred the funds to Zamanizadeh’s bank account. After Zamanizadeh defaulted on the loan, the true owner of the property purchased the property out of foreclosure for $400,000.

On June 14, 2021, Zamanizadeh was charged by criminal information with bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. On September 14, 2021, he pleaded guilty to bank fraud.

The court also ordered Zamanizadeh to pay $400,000 in restitution to the owner of the property.

U.S. Attorney Scott Erik Asphaug of the District of Oregon made the announcement.

This case was investigated by IRS-Criminal Investigation with assistance from the FBI. It was prosecuted by Katherine A. Rykken, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon.


Eric Liebman, 34, Tampa, Florida has been sentenced to 15 months in federal prison for conspiracy to commit bankruptcy fraud.

According to court documents, from January 2010 through February 2017, Liebman conspired with his co-defendant, James Lee Clark, to defraud mortgage creditors and guarantors, such as Fannie Mae, which held mortgage notes on properties that were in foreclosure. Liebman and Clark falsely and fraudulently represented to the distressed homeowners facing foreclosure that in exchange for executing quitclaim or warranty deeds for their properties to an entity controlled by Liebman, they would negotiate with the mortgage creditors to prevent foreclosures. Liebman and Clark convinced the distressed homeowners to pay them rent or agree to put their houses up for sale. In order to continue to collect ill-gotten rents, or profit from sales of the properties, Liebman filed fraudulent bankruptcy petitions in the names of the homeowners to prevent the mortgage creditors from lawfully foreclosing and taking title to the properties.

Liebman had pleaded guilty on September 24, 2019.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Housing Finance Agency – Office of Inspector General. The Office of the United States Trustee for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, also provided substantial investigative support. It was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Chris Poor.


Ernesto Diaz, 66, a former El Monte, California, who managed the sales staff for a program that falsely promised to eliminate the debt owed by struggling homeowners has been found guilty for his role in a scheme that caused customers to lose money and, in many cases, their homes.

Diaz is a former realtor who operated a purported mortgage elimination program in Montebello, California known as Crown Point Education Inc., was found guilty of three counts of mail fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud. Prior to the start of the trial, he also pleaded guilty to one count of failure to appear.

According to evidence presented at trial, Diaz and others advertised to distressed homeowners who sought relief from foreclosure and elimination of their mortgage debt. Diaz and others conducted seminars to convince homeowners that the Crown Point program could eliminate all or part of the existing balances on their mortgages, as well as save homes that were near or in foreclosure. Diaz told clients and prospective clients that the Crown Point program involved sending a series of documents to lenders and others to eliminate the clients’ mortgages. Clients were falsely told that the Crown Point program would result in the elimination of their mortgage within six to eight months and that they would be able to obtain up to hundreds of thousands of dollars from their lenders.

After clients signed up for the program and paid a fee, usually $15,000 per property, Diaz and a codefendant directed others to mail packets of information to the clients’ lenders which falsely asserted that the client’s mortgages were invalid and that mortgages would be extinguished if the lenders did not respond. Many of the mailed documents were notarized to create the appearance of legitimacy, at times using a notary’s stamp without that notary’s knowledge or consent. Clients were instructed not to make their mortgage payments while the program was implemented.

Bankruptcy petitions and other legal papers were filed in order to delay foreclosure and eviction actions brought by mortgage lenders. This was done by forging the names of clients in the petitions filed. These delays had the effect of lulling homeowners into believing that the Crown Point program had been effective. In some cases, Diaz and others would cause some clients to unknowingly execute quitclaim deeds that would convey ownership of their homes.

Crown Point obtained nearly $5 million from approximately 400 clients who paid to participate in the Crown Point program. Numerous clients lost their properties in foreclosure sales and were evicted from their properties despite having participated in the Crown Point program.

Diaz entered into a plea agreement in 2012; however, he failed to appear on October 15, 2012, for a change of plea hearing following his arraignment. Diaz was not located after failing to appear and agents believed at the time that he fled to Mexico. Diaz remained a fugitive for approximately seven years until his arrest on October 30, 2019, when he was arrested by the FBI in Santa Ana. He is scheduled to be sentenced on November 15 and faces 130 years in federal prison.

This investigation was conducted by the FBI and is being prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office, Central District of California.


Daniel Barraza Nevarez, Arizona, has plead guilty to two felony counts of Fraudulent Schemes & Artifices and Money Laundering in connection with an alleged scam designed to defraud homeowners and lenders.

Between November 2017 and February 2018, Nevarez filed a series of fraudulent quit-claim deeds transferring him ownership of single family homes in Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, and Phoenix. Nevarez then attempted to use the victims’ homes as collateral to secure cash loans. Nevarez used a false identity to execute this fraud, but his true identity was discovered through an undercover operation conducted by agents of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office and Scottsdale Police Department.

The plea agreement requires Nevarez to pay $21,708.43 in restitution for legal fees incurred by the victims as a result of these crimes. Nevarez will also serve no less than eight months in Maricopa County Jail.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich made the announcement.

Assistant Attorney General Adam J. Schwartz prosecuted the case.

Nevarez will be sentenced on November 8, 2018, at Maricopa County Superior Court.