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jllevante

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Posts: 30
Reply with quote  #1 
http://www.ocregister.com/articles/watkins-728425-investors-money.html

I have been to Shawn and Angel's REI few years back. I remembered Steve Dexter mentioned it, then he took a lot of heat from Tony Alvarez and the post got deleted altogether. 

I just want to pass this info in case someone had invested with the group and want to get more info:

"Anyone who may have invested money with Watkins or believes they may be a victim is asked to call FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office at 310-477-6565."



larrywww

Senior Member
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Posts: 2,094
Reply with quote  #2 

http://abc7.com/news/man-arrested-in-real-estate-fraud-scheme-that-lost-oc-investors-$35m/1505193/.  Here are some news reports of his arrest.

http://www.ocregister.com/articles/watkins-728425-investors-money.html.

He is alleged to have defrauded 50 investors of 3.4 million dollars and could face up to 180 years in jail.  However, by way of background, he was fond of pointing out that he had been an Orange County Sherriff for 9 years.

This was basically similar to a ponzi scheme.  He claimed to control hundreds of rentals that were providing rental income, which secured each investor's investment.  He also claimed to have recorded deeds of trust securing each investment.  Neither claim turned out to be true---he wasn't making money and he was using new investment money to pay the old investors to postpone the day of reckoning, until the whole thing collapsed in 2014.

Actually, there have been warning signs for some time.  This is a website who obtained a judgement against Watkins that wasn't satisfied back in 2013.  http://laraines.blogspot.com/2013/04/investment-scam-shawn-watkins.html.

It was in the summer of 2013 that Watkins decided to offer all 24 of his previous club meetings for free on the internet----which made him very popular with some investors.

But in retrospect there were signs of another story.  There was also a report about a Shawn Watkins operating as a property manager in Utah who was accused of pocketing all his client's rents.  I think the photo of him looks the same, but can't say for 100%.  (The interesting thing is that an Australian investor also claimed to have been bilked.)

An article that details some of Watkins legal problems in Utah is here.

http://www.standard.net/Police-Fire/2016/09/11/FBI-says-Layton-Ponzi-scheme-defendant-claimed-police-expertise

According to this article, Watkins was sued by his lender that resulted in a default judgement in 2011.  Another lawsuit was filed in Utah by Clear Day Capital, Inc in 2013.  The Utah article mentions that Angel Bronsgeest filed for bankruptcy in 2014.

(One odd thing: Investors workshops still has its own Youtube channel with recorded videos recommending it, even though (I believe) the club closed down.)

The other odd thing: Their Google Plus page for Investors Workshops still exists.
https://plus.google.com/u/0/103456923098594155685  

Ironic that a real estate club that bills itself as a "no pitch investment club" ended  this way.

The most detailed report concerns another lawsuit filed in Utah.  http://laraines.blogspot.com/2013/04/investment-scam-shawn-watkins.html.  What is especially disturbing about these judgements. as is pointed out in this blog, is that at the same time the wheels seemed to be coming off their enterprise they were bragging about their successful enterprise was on investors workshops----like it was 2 different worlds.

According to this last website:

"At http://www.zoominfo.com it says that Watkins has purchased more than 200 properties in the last 4 years, primarily using seller finacing techniques. This information was obtained on 11/09/2012.
On http://www.the norrisgroup.com/radio, it states that Watkins was an Orange County Deputy sheriff for 9 years until 1997, then he had over 14 years of real estate experience. It states that Watkins learned the value of training and integrity. On http://www.womensinvestclub.com, on 11/09/2012, it states that Watkins is a well respected pillar in the real estate investing industry, yet he told Mr. Ferre he has other judgments against him but basically ignores them. On http://www.youtube.com there is a post called "Shawn Watkins Creative Financing Expert (How to invest in Real Estate).This was published on July 6, 2012.  There are other postings on You Tube, as late as August 29, 2012 showing Watkins talking about his company "Investors Workshops".
On http://activerain.com/blogsview, Bruce Norris on 3/3/2012 talks about Watkins and Bronsgeest and the "success of their business".
On 11/09/2012. there is an article called "I survived real estate". It states that Watkins is the President of Investors Workshops and works with Bronsgeest as his partner.

Watkins denied everything that has been posted on line and said he does not know who posted these things.
He claims he has applied to work at Walmart, he has no steady income and is getting Government help.
He painted a completely different picture about himself to Ferre than what appears on line, namely that he is living in poverty and is basically destitute and he is not the successful investor, educator, partner, business man etc. that one is led to believe."

If these representations are accurate, then there is a material difference between what he represented to the public and what was true as a matter of fact.

The odd thing was that as a real estate club they seemed to have some reasonably good speakers and presentations.  Bizarre situation.

Did anyone see this coming?  Not me.
.

Arnette

Member
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Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #3 

Truly, the business was not securing more properties and had a negative income. expert assignments writer Cash from financial specialists was frequently used to pay a few casualties who thought it was premium or profits for their underlying ventures.

larrywww

Senior Member
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Posts: 2,094
Reply with quote  #4 
The criminal trial of Shawn Watkins scheduled for 8/1/2017.

http://www.standard.net/Courts/2016/10/23/Layton-Ponzi-scheme-defendant-s-trial-delayed-to-August-2017.

It's amazing that after (allegedly) stealing 3.5 million dollars Watkins only had to come up $35,000 to make bail.

The article also observes that:

The FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office said on Sept. 9 agents are investigating another possible Ponzi scheme linked to Watkins with investors in Utah, California and other states.

I haven't heard about this "other" Ponzi scheme before.
larrywww

Senior Member
Registered:
Posts: 2,094
Reply with quote  #5 
The truly amazing thing about this Ponzi scheme is that Watkins was collecting all this money to purchase cash flowing properties---except he wasn't.

Didn't anyone who invested (over 50 investors, I hear) think to at least verify that there was collateral for their loan?    

(At least, that's what I've heard).

I've heard about this type of scenario before, but they usually at least were buying properties (even if they were overpaying).
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