Final suspect surrenders in connection with Miami-Dade real estate scam
A 47-year-old man is the final suspect to be arrested in connection with a real estate scam that targeted people in Miami-Dade County, authorities confirmed on Wednesday.
Deinoser Bravo surrendered to police on Tuesday. He faces charges of organized scheme to defraud and conspiracy to commit organized fraud.
According to a news release from the Homestead Police Department, there are multiple cases in which Contreras pretended to be a realtor and lured victims to vacant homes via social media. Once at the homes, Diaz and Bravo posed as the homeowners and took money from the victims, authorities said.
A man named Kenny told Local 10 News that he spotted the listing on Facebook with the seller’s information, and when he visited the Miami-Dade home, a woman named Priscilla and two others greeted him.
“We came through, we liked the property. I mean, everything looked legit,” Kenny said.
He said he signed a lease and handed over more than $5,000 for first and last month’s rent, as well as a security deposit.
On move-in day, Kenny who is also a father of two, said he arrived in a U-Haul when he saw other families pulling up to the property.
What Kenny didn’t know is that Contreras had access to the property, because court records show Contreras was the home’s tenant, fighting eviction.
Another victim of the scam was Maria Urra, who is 7 months pregnant, and said she gave the trio close to $5,000 in cash after seeing the post on Facebook Marketplace.
“I am trying to look for a place where I could bring my baby when I give birth,” Urra said after giving them all of her savings.
The homeowners said Contreras stopped paying rent for the home.
Police said the trio is accused of organized scheme to defraud in at least nine cases in Homestead, ranging from Feb. 18 to March 4.
Miami-Dade police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta confirmed that his department is also investigating several cases regarding rental fraud, but said they are still “in the process of identifying the subject.”
Anyone who believes they were targeted by the trio is asked to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.