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May 23, 2014

DEFENDANTS INDICTED FOR DEFRAUDING $13.5 MILLION FROM 3,500 VICTIMS IN LARGEST LOAN MODIFICATION SCHEME EVER PROSECUTED IN THE NATION

Filed under: California Defense Attorney — fayarfa @ 12:06 am

SANTA ANA – An indictment was unsealed today against seven defendants, including an attorney, for defrauding over $13.5 million from over 3,500 victims in the largest loan modification scheme ever prosecuted in the nation.

Defendants

Maziar Bordbar, 31, Irvine, is charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, three felony counts of grand theft, one felony count of theft from an elder, 27 felony counts of money laundering, 21 felony counts of unlawful monetary transaction structuring, six felony counts of filing false tax returns, four felony counts of willful failure to file or make a fraudulent tax return, with sentencing enhancements for committing an aggravated white collar crime over $100,000, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, property damage or loss over $65,000, property loss over $200,000, property damage over $1.3 million, money laundering exceeding $50,000, money laundering exceeding $150,000, money laundering exceeding $1 million, money laundering exceeding $2.5 million, and committing a theft exceeding $100,000. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 52 years in state prison. He is being held on $9.8 million bail.

Nathaniel Ferrer, 26, Orange, is charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, three felony counts of grand theft, one felony count of theft from an elder, 17 felony counts of money laundering, with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $100,000, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, property damage or loss over $65,000, property loss over $200,000, property damage over $1.3 million, money laundering exceeding $50,000, money laundering exceeding $150,000, and committing a theft exceeding $100,000. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 27 years and four months in state prison. He is being held on $9.8 million bail.

Pamela Gressier, 54, Huntington Beach, is charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, three felony counts of grand theft, 44 felony counts of money laundering, one felony count of filing a false tax return, one felony count of willful failure to file or make a fraudulent tax return, with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $100,000, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, property damage or loss over $65,000, property damage or loss over $200,000, property damage or loss over $1.3 million, money laundering exceeding $50,000, money laundering exceeding $150,000, money laundering exceeding $1 million, money laundering exceeding $2.5 million, and committing a theft exceeding $100,000. If convicted, she faces a maximum sentence of 48 years and eight months in state prison. Gressier is a fugitive with a warrant for her arrest.

Saeid Yarandi, 31, Irvine, is charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, three felony counts of grand theft, 27 felony counts of money laundering, two felony counts of filing a false tax return, one felony count of willful failure to file or make a fraudulent tax return, with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $100,000, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, property damage or loss over $65,000, property damage or loss over $200,000, property damage or loss over $1.3 million, money laundering exceeding $50,000, money laundering exceeding $150,000, money laundering exceeding $1 million, money laundering exceeding $2.5 million, and committing a theft exceeding $100,000. If convicted, Yarandi faces a maximum sentence 37 years and four months in state prison. Yarandi is a fugitive with a warrant for his arrest.

Roberto Duran, 41, Montebello, Masood Taghizadeh, 64, Laguna Niguel, and Joel Valdellon, 31, Dana Point, are each charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of conspiracy to defraud another of property, three felony counts of grand theft, one felony count of theft from an elder, with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, property damage or loss over $65,000, property loss over $200,000, property damage over $1.3 million, and committing a theft exceeding $100,000. If convicted, they face a maximum sentence of 14 years in state prison. Duran and Valdellon are being held on $5 million bail and Taghizadeh is being held on $3.5 million bail.

The defendants must prove bail money is from a legal and legitimate source before posting bond. Bordbar, Ferrer, Duran, Taghizadeh, and Valdellon are scheduled for a continued arraignment June 3, 2014 at 1:30 p.m. in Department C-5, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. Gressier and Yarandi are fugitives with $13.5 million warrants for their arrests.

Background of the Case

Between Nov. 16, 2010, and June 6, 2011, Bordbar and Yarandi are accused of incorporating Consult Marketing Group, Inc. and Secured Processing, Inc.

At the time of the crime, Gressier was a licensed attorney and practicing law in California. Between June 24, 2011, and Aug. 31, 2012, Gressier is accused of filing a fictitious business name statement doing business as Prudential Law Group, Remedy Law, and Remedy Center Law with the Orange County Clerk-Recorder’s Office.

Bordbar, Yarandi, Ferrer, and Gressier are accused of operating Prudential Law Group which later became known as Prudent Law Group (Prudent Law). Bordbar, Yarandi, Ferrer, and Gressier are accused of changing the company name from Prudent Law to Remedy Center Law and various other similar names, and establishing a website for Prudent Law and Remedy Law to advertise loan modification services.

Circumstances of the Case

Between June 24, 2011, and Oct. 29, 2013, Bordbar, Yarandi, Ferrer, and Gressier are accused of coordinating mailings to thousands of homeowners advertising loan modification services. They are accused of hiring telemarketers to work as salespersons for homeowners calling in response to the advertisements.

Bordbar and Yarandi are accused of hiring Duran, Taghizadeh, and Valdellon to manage the sales teams of Prudential Law and Remedy Center Law. Duran, Taghizadeh, and Valdellon are accused of training sales staff members on what to say to potential customers.

Bordbar and Yarandi are accused of owning Consult Marketing Group, Inc. and providing the sales personnel for Prudential Law and Remedy Center Law. Ferrer is accused of running Secured Processed, Inc.

Bordbar, Duran, Ferrer, Gressier, Yarandi, Taghizadeh, and Valdellon are accused of falsely misrepresenting to approximately 3,500 customers that they qualify for a loan modification, when the defendants had no ability or authority to represent the victims on behalf of the lender. The defendants are also accused of misrepresenting to customers of Prudent Law and Remedy Law, through their salespeople and website, that they were a law firm and customers would be represented by attorneys. Gressier is accused of being the sole attorney working at Prudent Law and Remedy Law. The defendants are accused of illegally charging upfront fees for loan modification services. They are accused of obtaining more than $13.5 million from the victims.

Between Aug. 24, 2011, and Aug. 27, 2012, Gressier and Ferrer are accused of laundering the money they received from the victims by, on 17 occasions, transferring more than $25,000 of the funds between bank accounts within a 30-day period.

Between Feb. 7, 2012, and March 1, 2012, Gressier, Bordbar, and Yarandi are accused of laundering the money they received from the victims by, on 27 occasions, transferring more than $5,000 of the funds between bank accounts within a 7-day period.

In March 2012, Bordbar is accused of making a series of transactions under $10,000 through a bank to avoid having the bank file reports of the transaction. A financial institution is required to file a report with the Department of Justice on cash transactions that exceed $10,000.

Between Oct. 15, 2012, and May 24, 2013, Bordbar is accused of willfully filing a false or fraudulent tax return for 2011 and 2012.

Between March 19, 2012, and July 17, 2013, Yarandi is accused of willfully filing a false or fraudulent tax return for 2011 and 2012.

On Aug. 2, 2013, Gressier is accused of willfully filing a false or fraudulent tax return for 2011. On April 15, 2013, Gressier is accused of willfully failing to file a 2012 tax return.

Victims of the loan modification scam reported the case to the Newport Beach Police Department (NBPD) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). In August 2012, NBPD began investigating this case. On May 14, 2014, NBPD with assistance from the U.S. Secret Service (USSS) arrested Bordbar, Duran, Ferrer, Taghizadeh, and Valdellon.

NBPD, OCDA Bureau of Investigation, USSS, and the Franchise Tax Board investigated this case with assistance from The State Bar of California, FBI, Huntington Beach Police Department, Irvine Police Department, and the California Bureau of Real Estate.

To find out more information about this case and receive future updates, visit the Media Center on the homepage at www.orangecountyda.com and select Prudent/Remedy Law Loan Modification case.

Deputy District Attorney Megan Wagner of the Major Fraud Unit is prosecuting this case.

Orange County District Attorney / Case # 14ZF0332/ May 22, 2014

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