A former New York Police Detective, Frank DeFilippo of Boca Raton, Florida, was recently sentenced to 151 months in jail fro committing timeshare fraud.
Perhaps the most disconcerting part about his arrest is not only the fact that he was a former police officer, but that he thought the crime too inconsequential or juvenile to feel guilty enough to stop of his own accord. DeFilippo had organized telemarketers in a boiler room where they would negotiate to buy timeshares from often elderly couples. They would ask for upfront fees that could number up to $10,000 for provisions such as title services. The victims were told that they would be refunded the fees at the end of their transaction, which would never occur. The scheme victimized over 1,000 people and cost as estimated $2.5 million for individuals.
This is just another of many examples of how timeshare fraud can cause very real damages to those involved, and how it can come from unexpected places. Very few people would think to suspect a police officer of timeshare fraud, but as more and more people fall victim to it, it becomes a more lucrative business that makes timeshare resale that much more difficult. This is why it is important to NEVER accept upfront fees, and always check up and do your homework.
If you’re interested in buying or selling a timeshare without upfront fees, contact our licensed real estate professionals at 888-235-0466 or visit our website for more information:
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