DENVER (CBS4)– A man accused of stealing homes for profit will face a judge. Alfonso Carrillo is in police custody.
He’s believed to be at the center of a large organized crime scheme where people find homes under foreclosure, break in and then file paperwork to take over the property, claiming the home belongs to them.
Carrillo was arrested early Thursday morning in Thornton. He had an outstanding warrant filed a week ago from a grand jury in Denver.
Prosecutors claim Carrillo has a long history of stealing homes. Now that they have him in custody, they said they will try to keep him there. He’s being held on $750,000 bond in Adams County.
“Having Mr. Carrillo in custody helps us know at least for the moment, we won’t have new victims,” said Denver District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough.
Prosecutors worry if Carrillo is released he may try to flee or continue to allegedly sell homes he doesn’t own.
Last week a grand jury in Denver indicted Carrillo on 18 counts of theft and forgery. He is also charged with felony racketeering.
Carrillo is accused of falsely selling more than a dozen homes along the Front Range. Prosecutors said he targeted Spanish-speaking victims, many of whom may not be in the U.S. legally.
“There are victims who may not have felt comfortable coming forward for help. People who are vulnerable in other ways,” said Kimbrough.
Prosecutors in Denver believe there may be more victims. Three other suspects are still being sought in connection with the case.
The grand jury also indicted Rudy Breda, 64, on 10 separate counts. Police also have warrants for the arrest of Jose Caraveo, 40, and Veronic Fernandez-Beleta, 41, who were allegedly squatting in one of the stolen homes.
“The charges are very serious and are really kind of disturbing,” said Kimbrough.