OC man gets 18 years for real estate fraud

SANTA ANA, Calif. Orange resident Joseph Anthony Veltre, 68, pleaded guilty to 112 felony counts, including 60 counts of grand theft, 17 counts of elder financial exploitation by a non-caregiver, 17 counts of residential burglary, 13 counts of forgery and three counts of recording false documents.

In addition to the prison sentence Veltre was ordered to pay nearly $2.7 million in restitution.

Prosecutors say between 2002 and 2007 Veltre defrauded eight people in a Ponzi and real estate fraud scheme.

They say he used his two Orange County-based businesses, Sea View Financial and Allied Corporate Investments, to solicit money from private investors for borrowers looking for funds from non-bank lenders.

According to prosecutors, Veltre stole from his private investors, many of whom are now retired and elderly, by keeping the money they lent for borrowers looking to take out second and third mortgages and not funding the loans as promised. They say he operated a Ponzi scheme and used funds from new investors to pay off old investors.

Newport Beach Police began investigating Veltre after receiving complaints from several victims and arrested him on May 4, 2009.

Written victim impact statements were submitted to the court at the time of sentencing. One victim, a volunteer with the Newport Beach Police Department, stated: "At my age of 92, there is little, if any, hope of recovery, and of course my living expenses had to be drastically reduced as well as very little left in my will to the children."

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