A former realtor and Christian radio show host is being sentenced this morning for a mortgage fraud scheme targeting Spanish-speaking victims that totaled more than $2 million, according to the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office.
Edwin Parada, 33, pleaded guilty Feb. 17 to 29 counts of fraud affecting a total of 32 victims, said district attorney’s office spokeswoman Stephanie Ong Stillman.
Parada, a former realtor and pastor who also hosted a Spanish language Christian radio show, contacted his victims through his radio show and ministry, according to Stillman.
He persuaded his victims, who were struggling to pay their mortgages, to sign over the title to their homes to him, and then collected their mortgage payments. In some cases, he refinanced the homes and pocketed the money, Stillman said.
The funds were allegedly laundered through family members and a family business, and several of Parada’s relatives have also been charged in connection with the scheme.
The cases against Carlos and Karla Parada and Geovanny Avendano have not yet been resolved, Stillman said.
Edwin Parada faces a potential sentence of up to 30 years in state prison. His victims were expected to speak at this morning’s sentencing hearing in San Francisco Superior Court, Stillman said.
District Attorney George Gascon is planning to hold a news conference this afternoon to discuss the case.
Sara Gaiser, Bay City News