Lousiana man accused of scamming hundreds of realtors in $2 million fraud

by Ryan Smith03 May 2016
A Louisiana man has been accused of perpetrating a nationwide, $2 million scam to defraud realtors.
A federal grand jury has indicted Rex Alan Harris, 40, on 11 counts related to the alleged fraud, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. The indictment alleges that since 2008, Harris defrauded hundreds of real estate professionals nationwide by promising to promote them through television and internet advertising. Realtors were convinced to spend thousands of dollars on the promise they’d receive advertising on major television networks.

However, the promised advertising never materialized, and Harris and others spent the money for their own benefit, the Justice Department alleges. According to the DOJ, Harris and his compatriots spent more than $2 million of their victims’ money, including tens of thousands of dollars in purchases for New Orleans Saints season tickets and merchandise from PayPal, Nike.com and Foot Locker.

The law allows a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both on each count, the DOJ said.

The Justice Department also worries that some real estate agents may have been taken in by the scam without yet realizing it. Realtors may be victims if they paid money to any of the following entities: “Our Family First Realty,” “Better Realty Deals,” “Amazing Realty Deals,” “Top Agent/Monolith Media Group,” “American Real Estate Idols,” or “Agents by City.” Any real estate agent who thinks he or she may have been victimized should call 1-800-CALL-FBI.

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