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Sisters Sentenced for Real Estate Fraud

Prosecutors say a Newport Beach woman was also sentenced for conspiring with her daughters and son-in-law to commit over $16 million in real estate fraud.

Two sisters have been sentenced for conspiring with their mom - a Newport Beach woman- and another family member to commit over $16 million in real estate fraud by forging documents and purchasing homes using straw buyers, the Orange County district attorney's office reported today.

Suniti Shah, 51, was sentenced to eight years in state prison on Friday after pleading guilty to five felony counts of conspiracy to commit a crime, 13 felony counts of forgery, four felony counts of identity theft, four felony counts
of recording false and forged instrument, five felony counts of grand theft, and sentencing enhancement allegations for loss over $100,000, property damage over $1.3 million, and aggravated white collar crime over $500,000.

Her sister, Supriti Soni, 52, was sentenced to 10 years in state prison the same day after pleading guilty to nine felony counts of conspiracy to commit a crime, 17 felony counts of forgery, one felony count of identity theft, 12 felony counts of grand theft, with sentencing enhancement allegations for loss over $100,000, property damage over $3.2 million, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, and a 2003 prison prior for perjury.

In April Shah and Soni's mother, Sushama Devi Lohia, 74, of Newport Beach, after pleading guilty to a court offer of 12 felony counts of conspiracy to commit a crime, 27 felony counts of forgery, 12 felony count of grand theft, eight felony counts of failure to file, four felony counts of identity theft, four felony counts of recording false and forged instrument, two felony counts of underreporting income and sentencing enhancement allegations for loss over $100,000, property damage over $3.2 million, and aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, the D.A.'s office reported.

Shah's husband, Dinesh Valjeebhai Shah, 62, is also charged with five felony counts of conspiracy to commit a crime, 13 felony counts of forgery, four felony counts of identity theft, four felony counts of recording false and forged instrument, five felony counts of grand theft, and sentencing enhancement allegations for loss over $100,000, property damage over $1.3 million, and aggravated white collar crime over $500,000.

Dinesh Shah is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing on Friday in Santa Ana.

Prosecutors say the Shahs owned and operated New Age Realty, First Property Escrow, City First Realty, and Associates Investments Group in Tustin, while Soni owned Vason Development out of 1520 Warner Avenue, Santa Ana, a business that processed home loan applications. Lohia, a licensed real estate agent, worked out of both offices.

Prosecutors say the four family members worked together to secure loans for straw buyers using forged and false documents through their Tustin real estate offices to process fraudulent loans.

Mike Olmon July 31, 2012 at 01:40 PM
Great! I hope their conviction will scare others thinking they can get away with fraud to think twice and play by the rules. We need to restore trust in the real estate industry
Gopal Das August 02, 2012 at 02:03 PM
I think everybody should check out the Scam Detector app. I believe they're online as well.

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