INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWO): Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller filed a lawsuit today against three out-of-state companies and their owners for allegedly working in concert to perpetrate a tax sale scheme in attempt to swindle struggling property owners in Allen, Johnson, Lake and Marion counties out of potentially millions of dollars.
The defendants in the lawsuit include FLRC, LLC, Coastal Title, Inc. and Oak Tree Title, LLC, as well as Diana Castro, Craig Talkington and David Fuqua. These companies and individuals are based in Florida, Oklahoma and Nevada.
According to the complaint filed in Marion County court, the defendants perpetrated a complicated scheme that took advantage of vulnerable Hoosiers who had fallen behind in their real-estate taxes and who did not understand the tax sale process. It is suspected these defendants conducted the scheme in several other states as well.
They allegedly persuaded the homeowners to sign quitclaim deeds and other legal paperwork turning over their remaining legal interest in the properties to the defendants, in exchange for $450 or less. The companies, in turn, then were able to submit claims for the tax surplus payments the 48 original owners would have been entitled to – in amounts ranging from $2,000 up to $900,000.
The Attorney General’s Office is seeking more than $9 million in restitution and civil penalties.