Halle Berry Falls Victim to Property Fraud Scam Attempt
The Voice • April 2019
Halle Berry, known for her work as an actress in countless movies and television series, has been inducted into an unfortunate club with a growing number of members. Property fraud, one of the fastest-growing forms of white-collar scams, has affected countless homeowners and shows no signs of slowing down.
Ronald Eugene Griffin, 59, made several attempts to claim the actress’s home as his own, even going so far as to hire a locksmith in an attempt to change locks on the house. In June 2019, the criminal created a fake deed for Berry’s home, attempting to obtain ownership of the property – a prime example of one of the many ways property fraud can happen. Detectives began exploring the situation once Berry’s gardener approached Griffin as he was entering the property, who promptly fled the scene. Upon discovering that the documents Griffin had filed were falsified, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office charged and arrested the 59-year old man.
Griffin was quoted saying that he was not aware that the house belonged to Halle Berry, proving that property fraud can affect anyone and everyone. In 2017, the FBI reported that over 301,000 fraud complaints had been filed, totaling losses of over $1.4 billion. CoreLogic reported a 12.4% year-over-year surge in mortgage fraud risk when comparing the second quarter of 2018 to the second quarter of 2017. Property fraud scams and cybercrimes continue to rise at an unprecedented rate, posing a threat to homeowners across the nation.