Najia Jalan Used Bogus Names and Companies To Scam People Out Of $1.6 Million With Her Foreclosure Rescue Scam
A 30-year-old Najia Jalan from Costa Mesa, California pleaded guilty last week to federal charges stemming from a foreclosure rescue scam that targeted homeowners with bogus promises of mortgage relief.
In October, 2014, knowing federal officials in Santa Ana were contemplating criminal charges against her for posing as an attorney and operating a mortgage scam, Jalan decided to buy a one-way ticket from LAX through Dubai to Afghanistan on Emirates Airline.
But as the backpack-toting Jalan boarded the Oct. 18 flight, two special agents with the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) arrested her on mail fraud, wire fraud and aggravated identity theft charges.
Jalan entered her plea in Los Angeles federal court to charges of mail fraud and aggravated identity theft. Jalan faces between two and six years in federal prison when she is sentenced Oct. 5 by U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner.
Jalan who tried to paint herself as an attorney used company names such as the National Legal Help Center, United National Mortgage Protection Center, OC NonProfit, American Consumer Law Center to trick victims into paying her substantial fees.
Jalan used various aliases to attract struggling homeowners by deceptively promising foreclosure relief or mortgage modifications to make consumers’ payments substantially more affordable, court papers show.
Federal Prosecutors say Jalan promised to obtain results within a certain period of time, charging homeowners unlawful advance fees, ranging from $1,000 to $3,000 and in some cases more than $10,000.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) sued Jalan and a co-defendant in 2012 in connection with the National Legal Help Center, which falsely claimed that they would provide legal representation for consumers even though the defendants were not attorneys and consumers received no actual legal representation, according to the agency.