Defendant allegedly used client’s money like a personal bank account
LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced that his Homeowner Protection Unit has filed thirty-five felony charges against Pasquale Longordo, 39, of Birmingham, and his company Modify Loan Experts, LLC, for allegedly stealing money from Michigan residents who were facing mortgage foreclosures or needed help managing their credit card debt. Longordo also faces an additional three misdemeanor charges.
“People who abuse the trust of their clients during a vulnerable time, for their own personal benefit, will be held accountable for their actions,” said Schuette. “I applaud the work of my Homeowner’s Protection Unit for the diligence of their investigation and hope that this case can bring some relief for his victims.”
Schuette filed the charges on March 9, 2016 against Longordo and Modify Loan Experts in Oakland County’s 52-4 District Court. Each set of the following charges were filed against both Longordo and Modify Loan Experts:
Four counts of false pretenses, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine (8 total);
Six counts of larceny by conversion, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine (12 total);
Six counts of violating the debt management act, a felony punishable by up to two years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine (12 total);
One count of larceny, a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a $2,000 fine (2 total);
The following charges were filed against Longordo only:
Three counts of failing to file income tax returns, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine;
One count of unemployment compensation fraud, a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail;
Two counts of conducting business under an assumed name without filing a certificate, a misdemeanor punishable by up to thirty days in jail.
Longordo and his company were arraigned before Magistrate Judge Clement Waldmann of the 52-4 District court in Troy on Thursday, March 10. Bond was set at $15,000 PR for Longordo and $15,000 PR for Modify Loan Experts. Longordo was also ordered to surrender his passport. Longordo’s next court appearances include a probable cause conference on March 23 and a preliminary examination on March 30.
Longordo and Modify Loan Experts allegedly promised victims that they would have an attorney assigned to represent them and negotiate mortgage modifications on their behalf with mortgage companies. However, this did not happen and many victims lost their homes as a result.
Additionally, Longordo, who also operated a credit card debt management service, allegedly told debt management victims he was putting their funds into an escrow account and that he would use the payments to negotiate their debt with credit card companies. In reality, Longordo put the victims’ funds into a regular bank account and allegedly used that account like his personal ATM.
During this time, Longordo allegedly received unemployment compensation although he was ineligible, and he failed to file taxes for several of his companies.
Foreclosure Rescue Scam Victim Restitution Fund
In August 2013, Schuette announced the launch of a $7.5 million Foreclosure Rescue Scam Victim Restitution fund as a part of the Homeowner Protection Fund monies received by the State of Michigan to resolve the National Mortgage Settlement. This program is intended to provide restitution payments for victims of foreclosure scams who would otherwise never see a penny of court-ordered restitution.
For more information on the mortgage settlement, including a consumer alert and a Frequently Asked Questions document available for download on the Attorney General’s website.
In addition to operating Modify Loan Experts, Longordo operated under the company names Modify Debt Experts LLC, Experts LLC, Modify Credit Experts, and DLC Group.
Citizens who believe they may have been victims of Pasquale Longordo and/or Modify Loan Experts or any of his other companies are encouraged to file complaints with the Attorney General’s Office.
A criminal charge is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.