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11/18/10

Persistent Scammer Moves Across State Lines

As states become more aware of the loan modification scams that are running rampant throughout the country, scammers are being shut down by state and local officials. However, this does not mean these scammers won't be back with another company. According to Florida Times-Union; Global Equity Solutions, a Florida based company run by Brian Lozito, was shut down and assets seized by Florida authorities. Three weeks later, Lozito set up shop again just 60 miles away in the state of Georgia.

Global Equity Solutions advertised online and through mailings as a loan modification company for homeowners facing foreclosure. The company charged fees upfront, but failed to provide modifications. Investigators have found three victims who paid $1,900 each for services they never received. Tara Sciartelli of Jacksonville, FL lost her home after paying Global Equity Solutions $1,700 upfront. Charges are being brought against Lozito for claiming to do mortgage loan modifications without a license and for charging upfront fees.

While the Sheriff's Office prepares to file charges, Lozito's new company in Georgia, Peachtree Consultants Inc., has already established an office and a website offering loan modifications for an upfront fee. The ease with which Lozito was able to re-locate and continue his business scams underlines the daunting task of shutting down these scammers for good. There is very little that states can do to stop scammers like Lozito without consumer complaints (none so far against the newly created company in Georgia) and without consumer protection laws between states regarding mortgages.

The National Loan Scam Modification Database, operated by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law in partnership with other national and local organizations, aims to share information about scammers on a national level. The Lawyers' Committee reminds homeowners to speak with a HUD-approved housing counselor to receive help in modifying your mortgage.

To read the full story published by Florida Times-Union, see Mortgage Loan Operator Shut Down in Clay County Moves to Georgia.