Uncovering a network of real estate crooks

Uncovering a network of real estate crooks
If you analyze the relationships among different players,
you might find they’re all using the same script.

A group was working with a city trying to fix housing violations. But when violations, such as raw sewage leaks, were presented to the building’s owners, the owners would reply that the building was now owned by someone else, and the new owners were responsible. This seemed to be a ploy to avoid fixing the problems. Meanwhile, the buildings were deteriorating and causing problems for the tenants.

The group was suspicious and decided to try what’s called "social network analysis",  a method of scrutinizing and mapping the relationships among all the participants. They discovered that although the buildings were being sold to different companies, some of the people in one company were married to people in the other company.

What was uncovered was that the buildings were owned by various members of the same family. And, oh yes, one of the members was on the board of the mortgage company which had financed all of the real estate transactions.

The city government won convictions and tenants won a lawsuit using this new information.

Uncloaking a Slumlord Conspiracy with Social Network Analysis, orgnet.com>>

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