Second arrest for alleged fake broker in Bronx

January 07, 2010 07:27PM

A woman who allegedly posed as a residential sales agent or broker
although she was unlicensed was arrested today for the second time in
two months and charged with stealing more than $20,000 from families
seeking rental apartments, the office of the Bronx District Attorney
said.

Cecilia Casabuena, 53, of Manhattan, is accused of posing as a
licensed real estate agent or broker and scamming 10 victims out of
more than $20,000 in security deposits and fees, prosecutors said.

The complaint said Casabuena misrepresented herself to several Bronx
real estate companies, and attracted clients through referrals and the
Spanish language El Diario newspaper.

Some of those who claim they were scammed were recipients of aid
through the New York City Housing Authority’s Section 8 rental voucher
program, the Bronx DA’s office said.

Between February 2008 and October 2009, Casabuena allegedly charged 10
victims an average of $2,000 in security deposits and fees each and
promised that she would obtain apartments for them, but never did.

Authorities first arrested her in November 2009 for similar charges,
but after a television show aired additional potential victims came
forward, and new charges filed leading to today’s arrest.

She was charged with grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen
property, criminal impersonation and other offenses, and faces up to
seven years in prison, the DA’s office said.

Investigators said the case remained open and additional charges might
be filed. TRD


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