DENVER (CBS4) – The man accused of stealing homes took the witness stand in his defense on Tuesday and claimed everything he did was legal.
Alfonso Carrillo said he saw big potential in fighting real estate fraud by banks and mortgage brokers. So he set up “America’s Home Retention Services.”
Carrillo said he accepted fees to find people abandoned homes to move into. He said victim Maria Molinar wanted a palace and agreed to give him several thousand dollars. However what she got was a deed of adverse possession. Her lawyer told her it wasn’t worth anything.
Carrillo used that method in numerous homes, accepting fees to put people in foreclosed homes that had been left empty. He said he would warn his clients they could be evicted adding, “If you pay me $10,000 and live in the home for two years, you are in better shape.”
Under adverse possession one would have to occupy it up to 18 years, meeting certain conditions.
Carrillo’s wife Maria is now only facing theft charges. Most of the case against her was dismissed by the judge.
“She had no role in any criminal activity. The jury will decide if Alfonso Carrillo’s actions were legal or illegal,” said her attorney Wadi Muhaisen.
On the stand Carrillo accused witnesses of trying to extort him. He also claimed the Denver district attorney doctored evidence and tried to have him beat up in jail.