California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced Friday, May 12, 2023, that Robert Sedler, the CEO of Grand View Financial LLC, was convicted of 100 felony counts for his role in an extensive mortgage fraud scheme that victimized homeowners across the Golden State.
Between 2015 and 2019, Sedler and associates Steven Rogers and Audrey Gan promised elderly and socio-economically disadvantaged homeowners relief from their foreclosure woes for a fee. In the end, every one of these Californians lost their home and Grand View Financial lined its pockets.
Mendocino County’s geographic isolation from California’s urban areas did not thwart these fraudsters. Homeowners in the Mendocino Coastal town of Point Arena became a victim in August 2016.
Court documents reveal that Grand View Financial set its sights on a home located on the 44000 block of Point Arena’s Lighthouse Road owned at the time by Robert Roberts and Timothy Brey.
The County of Mendocino’s public property records database indicates that Roberts and Brey became owners of the Point Arena home in June 2007.
In early August 2016, the homeowners transferred ownership rights to Grand View Financial lured by their promises of foreclosure relief.
By November of that year, the foreclosure was official, JP Morgan Chase had taken possession, and Grand View Financial carried on victimizing California homeowners.
Zillow.com indicates the home was listed for sale in March 2019, three years after the fraud began, and sold in August of that year.
Grand View Financial’s defrauding of these Point Arena homeowners would result in eleven felony counts including engaging in a prohibited act as a foreclosure consultant, multiple counts of filing falsified documents, and grand theft by false pretense.
We sought comment from homeowners Roberts and Brey leaving multiple voicemails. As of publication, we have yet to hear back.
The AG’s Office explained Grand View Financial’s modus operandi would be to promise “consumers that if they transferred title of their house to Grandview Financial and paid money, the company would eliminate the mortgage lien and deed the home back to the homeowner, clear of any liens.”
While collecting funds from these financially-desperate homeowners, Grand View Financial filed false documents in courthouses and county recorder’s office, fictionalized bankruptcies stalling foreclosures, while doing nothing to negate the lein.
The fraud scheme resulted in homeowners losing their homes to foreclosures in the counties of San Diego, San Mateo, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Joaquin, Placer, Solano, Mendocino, San Francisco, El Dorado, and Sacramento.
California’s Judicial Branch warns homeowners to “beware of foreclosure scams” stating “Fraudulent companies offer help, take your money, and then do nothing to help. Both licensed and unlicensed professionals commit these scams.” These tips can help homeowners spot potential scammers.
If a homeowner feels they are being targeted by one of these foreclosure scammers, file a complaint with the State of California Attorney General’s Office here.
To learn more about the men and women behind this extensive fraud scheme, read the press release issued by the Office of California Attorney General Rob Bonta below:
California Attorney General Rob Bonta today announced that the former president of a purported mortgage “investment” company, Robert Sedlar, has been convicted of 100 felony counts for operating a mortgage fraud scheme throughout California. The scheme resulted in a combined loss of over $7 million. The victims, including people who were elderly and in financial distress, sought mortgage relief services from Grand View Financial LLC in the counties of San Diego, San Mateo, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Joaquin, Placer, Solano, Mendocino, San Francisco, El Dorado, and Sacramento. The operators of Grand View Financial—Steven Rogers, Robert Sedlar, and Audrey Gan—were previously indicted by a grand jury in the Sacramento Superior Court for conspiracy, grand theft, elder abuse, filing false or forged documents in a public office, and engaging in a prohibited act as a foreclosure consultant. Steve Rogers and Audrey Gan entered guilty pleas before trial, and Robert Sedlar, president of the company, proceeded to trial in March 2023 on all counts. Today, Robert Sedlar was found guilty of Conspiracy as well as multiple counts of Filing a False Document, Grand Theft, Elder Abuse, and Prohibited Acts by a Foreclosure Consultant. He will be sentenced on July 21, 2023. “Let this be a strong warning to anyone seeking to steal people’s hard-earned money: We will find you, and we will hold you accountable,” said Attorney General Bonta. “Individuals who prey on vulnerable communities to enrich themselves will be held accountable by the California Department of Justice. My office will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute those who disregard the rule of law. Between 2015 and 2019, the defendants conspired to steal money and homes from distressed homeowners using a company called Grand View Financial LLC. The company advertised assistance to desperate homeowners facing foreclosure. The defendants promised consumers that if they transferred title of their house to Grandview Financial and paid money, the company would eliminate the mortgage lien and deed the home back to the homeowner, clear of any liens. During this time, the defendants filed false court documents, false documents with the county recorders offices, and false bankruptcies that stalled the foreclosures but did nothing to eliminate the liens, all while collecting funds from the victims. Every single victim lost their home as a result. The indictment and arrests are the result of a joint investigation by the California Department of Justice, Fraud and Special Prosecutions Section and White Collar Investigation Team; the United States Office of Inspector General, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; the United States Office of Inspector General, Federal Housing Finance Agency; the United States Trustee Program; the United States Marshals Service; the Stanislaus County District Attorney's Office; and the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office. Also with assistance from the United States Trustees, Los Angeles Field Office. A copy of the charges can be found here.