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Additional victims sought in Glendale rental scam

Additional victims sought in Glendale rental scam
Wail Balkhi was arrested on suspicion of grand theft by false pretense after allegedly scamming eight people out of thousands of dollars using a fake Glendale apartment listing, police say. (Courtesy of the Glendale Fire Department)

Glendale police are searching for additional victims of a man they suspect of scamming multiple people through a fraudulent apartment listing.

Wail Balkhi, 22, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of grand theft by false pretenses for allegedly bilking approximately $14,000 from eight people. His arrest was related to a scam he reportedly ran from June 8 to 15, advertising for rent the apartment he lived in on the 100 block of West Avenue, according to the Glendale Police Department.

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Tahnee Lightfoot, a department spokeswoman, said the victims all met with Balkhi under the auspices of finishing paperwork for renting the apartment and touring the space.

He would collect a security deposit or the first month’s rent from them and then cut off all communication.

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Lightfoot said Balkhi himself was evicted from the apartment days after scamming the victims.

She added detectives believe there may have been other victims who fell for the scam.

“Just based on the investigation … he could be using other apartments and doing the same type of scam elsewhere in Los Angeles County,” she said.

Balkhi is currently being held in lieu of $250,000 bail.

Anyone with additional information can called Glendale police at (818) 548-3101.

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