Lehigh woman charged in two fraud cases
An investigation that began in late 2008 has ended with the arrest of a Lehigh Acres woman for various fraud and theft charges in two unrelated cases, officials said Wednesday.
Angela M. Moore, 32, has been charged with a scheme to defraud, grand theft, and operating as a real estate broker without a license in a case involving online real estate sales.
In a second case, Moore advertised a job fair on Craigslist whereby potential employees were required to purchase Magic Jacks, officials said. This investigation resulted in Moore being charged with a scheme to defraud, uttering counterfeit checks, grand theft, and petit theft.
The initial investigation began in October 2008 when the Office of the Attorney General received a complaint and referred it to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office Economic Crimes Unit. The victim had participated in an online auction with landbidz.com in June 2008. After wiring money to the seller’s account, the victim was not able to reach the seller to obtain his warranty or property deed. As per the contract, both of these items should have been provided to the victim within 48 hours of the sale.
Detectives with the Economic Crimes Unit began an extensive investigation where they discovered Moore, operating as ‘Home Design Consultants,’ had participated in fraudulent real estate activity and collected a combined total of $63,802.00 from five online victims, officials said. In addition to those victims, Cape Coral’s Island Coast High School became a victim in October 2008 after paying $5,300.00 to Moore’s business, Home Design Consultants, for a solar powered filtration system that was never installed.
In March 2009, while investigating the landbiz.com case, the Economic Crimes Unit received a fraud complaint involving a job fair that had been advertised on Craigslist. The individual being accused of this fraudulent job fair was the same Angela Moore of Home Design Consultants who was already under investigation for the online real estate fraud, officials said.
On Feb. 1, 2009, Angela Moore gave a presentation about jobs that would soon be available with “Home Design Consultants,” officials said. Potential employees were required to pay $10 for the purchase of a Magic Jack. Several individuals came forward and stated they had attended the job fair, but never received their Magic Jacks and were never hired. Many were concerned because their personal information was now in the hands of Moore. Three of the participants had been hired and each had received over $700 in paychecks. All of their paychecks had bounced as they were drawn on a non-existent account, officials said, adding this case involved 12 victims with the total theft valued at $2969.37.
Moore was arrested and transported to the Lee County Jail.
Source: Lee County Sheriff’s Office